Pierson’s sculptures embody a fine juxtaposition of paradoxical and contradictory narratives. They are dreamy yet theatrical, subtle but sultry, bold yet not overstated. Composed of a collection and assembly of salvaged letters from Las Vegas casinos, old movie marquees, and other exhausted businesses, the word sculptures form individual words or phrases that exude thought and emotion. These works seem to hint at tales of faded glamour, nostalgia for impetuous romance, and rash pursuit of stardom. Whilst the color and motifs in the works powerfully recall the American culture and the American dreams of fame and fortune in their reference to once dazzling road-side signs, the individual letters are now in a state of decay and Pierson’s works are marked with disillusionment, ultimately expressing an autobiographical narrative of his own unfulfilled journeys and sentiments of disappointment. Like reading fragments of the artist’s emotional diary, his works reveal elements of the familiar, unexpected, and private. Despite the sculptures having readable text, Pierson’s works reflect the dual notions of evocation and denial of context. Pierson at once alludes to and subverts his references, leaving us to ponder in our own associations and sensibilities.
On the eve of New York artist Jack Pierson's new show at the Aspen Art Museum, which restages and rehangs seminal art works Pierson made from 1990 to 1996, he spoke with the poet and critic Eileen Myl
**When I knew we were talking, I found myself thinking about your work, which I've just loved for so long, as well as loving you, and I thought, 'What is it?' Your work is notebook-y, it's sun-drenche