While at the Oakland Museum, checking out their new expansion, I came across a Jess (Collins) original. I hadn’t thought about his works in years, but they are incredibly detailed collages that capture scenic and vast wonderlands. Saw an exhibit of his work years ago and was blown away by his precision and composition. Such painstaking labor must have gone into creating them. Looked on the web for images to share with you and was really surprised to find very little. The exhibit I saw had tons of huge collages and some of his impasto (thickly textured paint that is almost three-dimensional in appearance.) works as well. Viewing these works is really a problem on the computer, most the files were too small to capture good details from. I did supply a detail of the one from the Oakland Museum, (above). Sad, that such a great artist has so little out there for people to see. I wonder where all his originals are? And why isn’t there a quality art book out there of his works? Is it because he was gay? Anyway, enjoy what you can here and if you ever get a chance to go see his stuff in person, do it!
From PaperStreetSupplies: Jess Collins was an important and influential painter & collage artist who had a defining role in the San Francisco Bay Area art scene during the latter portion of the 20th century. “He was the essential San Francisco artist,” said Harry Parker, director of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, who was well acquainted with the artist. “His political views and his quirky artistic style, his association with the poetry scene, his advocacy of gay rights — all the issues that came into his work were so representative of the San Francisco perspective. Only here could you imagine work like his being made.”