University of North Texas art professor and painter Robert Jessup opened a solo show in a Dallas gallery on Saturday. His work will remain on exhibit through Feb. 16.
Jessup’s show opened at Conduit Gallery, 1626-C Hi Line Drive in Dallas. Titled “Pictures & Stories,” the recent work is informed by Jessup’s studio practice, which has been dominated by impulsiveness and improvisation recently.
Contrasting colors move, whipping and banner-like, across the canvas. Gesture plays a key role in the painter’s recent work, and yet the viewer can find the familiar in Jessup’s abstractions — an eye peeks out at the viewer here, and bodies are in motion there.
It’s as if the artist and teacher worked to preserve his first instinct, letting freshness supersede his editing sense. Both negative space and brash swipes of color share Jessup’s canvases, along with audacious, ribbon-like lines swinging the eye around the focal point of the paintings.
The pictorial part of “Pictures & Stories” is in the work, while titles like Little Me as a Dog and Witch and Coyote start the “stories” for viewers.
The show includes oil on canvas and mixed-media work.
Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.