The Ideas Man: Jason Brooks
Jason Brooks is fascinated by the traditional medium of paint but, like his YBA peers who rose to fame in the 1990s, his approach isn’t old-school, it’s conceptual. Prepping in his Gloucester studio for his enigmatically titled forthcoming show, The Subject is Not the Subject, he says the title explains the “whole premise behind all of the work”, which encompasses a wide vocabulary of painting from airbrush and acrylic to oils.
The exhibition will comprise his landscapes, inspired by amateur paintings that he’s collected over 20 years from thrift stores and car-boot sales, to his hyper-real portraits of friends and his devotional works and objects. “I’m interested in the language of painting and how it has the potential to transform the subject to see it afresh,” he says, adding, “Growing up in Yorkshire we didn’t have high art on the walls, but something similar to the paintings that I collect. There is a love invested within them and a desire to succeed, even though failure is round the corner. We need to embrace that, it’s a wonderful thing.”