Jackson Ward BFA Intermedia Thesis Fall 2015

My earliest memory was of an antique WWII fighter plane in an airshow crash landing on the runway and exploding into a massive plume of flame and smoke.

Something tells me that experience has colored my perspective on life.

There is a saying in my family (I hesitate to call it a saying, as we’re not necessarily the type of people to have “sayings”) that goes: Feel the pain, Swift and Cold, and is generally said with subtle maniacal relish. We say this because life is pain, there is no getting around it; in accepting how much it sucks and how absurd and unfair it is, it suddenly starts feeling funny in a pitch-black, impenetrable gloom sort of way. That’s what we get as humans, a raw deal and an incinerating cosmic joke.

This work was made in the spirit of Feel the Pain, Swift and Cold, informed by the Hindu Goddess Kali and the Tibetan Buddhist Deity Mahakala; it is built in the framework of the beat poets and their cut-up method, and rests on a bed of black, which absorbs all forms and colors and is therefore the transcendence of form and color.

This is my dharma art, and it is a gift to you, to use in your contemplation of the emancipatory and protective power of all- encompassing, all-destroying black.

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