Jason Deary’s acrylic paintings play with the aesthetics of photography, prints and documentation. To make these works he creates acrylic skins or sheets, silk screening onto some and painting into others. These skins are ultimately collaged onto the painting’s surface. There are repeated motifs in these works: the fence, the gate, the window. These motifs provide a formal structure for his imagery while alluding to deeper meaning. For the artist, these are spaces for reflection, they allow passage, but also protection. Much of the line work exists only in the negative, masked off with tape to show the layer underneath. Marks become defined by what is not actually there, like outlines, or ghosts. Deary makes abstract paintings that represent an investigation of fragmented memory through a wide variety of adopted and invented painting languages and an exhaustive exploration of techniques. He is interested in “how we can hold onto, reveal, and record memories of the past in order to understand the present and imagine our future”.
Jason Deary completed his BFA at The University of Windsor in 2010 and participated in The Banff Centre Work Study program from 2011-2012. He spent two years in Calgary before going on to complete his MFA at OCAD University in 2014. He describes that time in our city as really important for him in terms of personal and professional growth. Deary has exhibited in Calgary, Vancouver, Toronto, and New York amongst other places. His work is held in private and corporate collections in Canada, the United States, and Europe. He was the recipient of an Emerging Artist grant from the Toronto Arts Council (2014), Ontario Art Council Grants (2015, 2017) and a Canada Council Grant (2018). He currently lives and works in Toronto.