Jason Stopa

Jason Stopa (b. 1983) sees his abstract paintings as part a tradition that seeks to expand formal languages. He doesn’t see formal issues as elitist or removed from the social. Rather, this tradition is an extension of a several impulses in contemporary abstraction that seeks to question a painting’s status in relation to the wall and the architecture of a gallery. In this way, painting acts a bridge to the concerns of everyday life, it can speak to the nature of what it means to be. 

Stopa’s paintings are made up of mark-making separated into discreet units – gesture, drawing, line.  He wants to employ a kind of pictorialism, where abstraction can be an image of itself.   For his past two solo shows in New York and France, Stopa painted a gate pattern and an archway pattern, which created a fissure between the architecture of the space and the sensate nature of the paintings. In these exhibits, he wanted to create a stage for paintings to be “hung on.” Stopa is a painter of theatricality. His paintings contain representational content. By the use of graphic color to create gradients, pattern and gesture. Stopa often creates impasto frames, squeezed straight out of the tube, to create vignettes with illusionistic depth. He is interested in how mark-making can create physical and atmospheric sensations that vie with sculpture and perform a painting. These are paintings where marks and images are actors acting in space, where a painting can be a stage for events.