Jacob Ouillette, ‘Axis Red’, 2012, Jim Kempner Fine Art

About Jacob Ouillette

Jacob Ouillette conceives of his paintings as musical compositions. Entranced by the possibilities of color, Ouillette, who hand mixes his own pigments, explores its simultaneously scientific and subjective nature. Channeling the act of live performance, he applies each colorful stroke in one motion, working from left to right and making no revisions. He does not draw his compositions beforehand, cautious of distracting the viewer from his gridded hues. The multicolored results are like visualizations of combinable, permutable sounds: just as some notes are loud and others are soft, some colors are bright and others dark. “When the brushstroke bends, swoops, dips, swings, sings, and vibrates, to me it could be blasting out of a harmonica, saxophone, or an electric guitar,” says the artist.

American, b. 1974