Our childhood homes are always with us—in memories of surfaces, textures, and smells of objects rich with layered associations. Jean Blackburn’s sculptures and painting express how our childhood perceptions are tested and adjusted in dynamic interplay with our accumulated experience and the passage of time. She manipulates images of rooms, and actual domestic objects, to suggest the whittling away of some beliefs and the reinforcement of others: materials grow into each other, and new structures emerge at the cost of older ones. Some materials nurture delicate constructions, while others wither, or are plundered. In her paintings and mixed media works on paper, home furnishing catalogues’ comfortable images are reinterpreted to question and subvert familiar but preconceived values and marketable narratives. Through her intimate reworking of familiar objects and images, she positions her sculptures and her paintings on the verge of a multitude of possibilities, exploring the negotiation between individual identity and cultural prescription.
Yale School of Art, Yale University, M.F.A., painting.
Rhode Island School of Design, B.F.A., painting, design.
1982 to present Professor, Rhode Island School of Design. Courses taught include Drawing I and II, Painting I and II, Scientific Illustration, Visible Cities, The Domestic Object, Advanced Drawing, 3D Illustration.
Oct. 2015 Visiting Critic, Roger Williams University
Dec. 2011 Visiting Critic, Brown University. Critic for sophomore painting project.
Summer 2010, 08, 06, 03 Vermont Studio Center,, Painting and Sculpture, Johnson, VT.
Nov. 2006 Visiting Critic, Anderson Ranch. Critic for winter residency program.
Summer 2005 Instructor, Anderson Ranch. Course taught: Sculpture
Sept.-Oct. 2006 Dolly and Richard Maass Gallery, School of Artand Design, PurchaseCollege, Purchase, N.Y.
Fall 2004 Jean Blackburn, McDough Museum of Art, Youngstown StateUniv., Youngstown, Ohio, curated by Leslie Brothers.
March-April 2004 Holed, paintings and sculpture, Caren Golden Fine Arts, N.Y, N.Y.
Oct. –Nov. 2002 Livingroom, sculpture and paintings, Caren Golden Fine Arts, N.Y., N.Y.
March 1999 Deven Golden Gallery, sculpture and drawings, N.Y., N.Y.
March 1997 Bronwyn Keenan Gallery, sculpture, N.Y., N.Y.
Oct. 1995 Dahn Gallery, sculpture and drawings, one-person show, N.Y.,N.Y.
Nov. 1994 Reconstruct, Pierogi, sculpture and drawings, one-person show, Brooklyn, N.Y.
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
Fall 2016 Group Show, Outdoor Installation, Kennard Park, Newton, Ma., curated by Allison Newsome
Sept. 5- Oct. 5 2014 Pierogi XX,, Pierogi, Brooklyn, N.Y.
July-Oct. 2013 Locally Made, R.I. School of Design Museum, Prov. R.i
March19-April 19 2013 Raid the Attic, Granoff Center, Brown University, Prov., R.I.
March 2012 Group Show, Chazan Gallery, Wheeler School, Prov., R.I.
June 16-Aug. 29, 2010 A Sepatate Piece, McNeill Art Group, N.Y., N.Y., curated by Anna Ort and Shane McAdams
Feb. 5-May 16, 2008 Informed by Function, Lehman College Art Gallery, Bronx, N.Y. , curated by Susan Hoeltzel and Claudia Calirman.
Jan.15-March 15, 2008 Domestico, Ierimonti Gallery, Milan, Italy.
Dec.4-21 2007 Brief Encouters, Caren Golden Gallery, N.Y., N.Y.
Sept. 2006 – Jan. 2007 Transitional Objects, Neuberger Museum, Purchase College, Purchase, N.Y., curated by Dede Young.
Oct-Nov., 2006 Material Abuse, Colgate U., N.Y.
June 29-Aug.4, 2006 Material Abuse, Caren Golden Gallery, N.Y., N.Y.
Spring 2006 Group Show, Sun Valley Center for the Arts, curated by Jennifer Gately.
April 21-May 26 2006 Plastic Fantastic, The Shore Institute of Contemporary Art, Long Branch, N.J., curated by Christopher Chambers.
Feb.16-March 8 2006 Secretive, Wheeler Gallery, Prov, R.I., curated by Annette Cyr.
Jan. 5-14, 2006 Synthetic Aesthetic, The LAB, curated by Christopher Chambers.
Sept. 21-Nov. 20 2005 Design for Living, Islip Art Museum, East Islip, N.Y., curated by Karen Shaw.
April 30- July 30 2005 Annual Summer Invitational Exhibition, De Cordova Museum, Lincoln, Ma.
May13-June 8 Rearranged/Redefined:Domestic Objects Reconsidered, Main Line Art Center, Haverford, PA, curated by Mary Salvante.
Jan.22-March 20 2005 Material Matters, sculpture, Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y. curated by Andrea Insellman.
Nov. 26-Dec.24 2005 3 person show, ceramics, David Florio Gallery, Aspen, Colorado.
June 2004-Jan. 2005 About Sculpture, The Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, N.Y., curated by Ian Berry.
Fall 2003 Undomesticated Interiors, Smith College Art Museum, curated by Linda Muelig.
June- Aug. 2003 Perforations, McKenzie Fine Arts, group show, curated by Valerie McKenzie, N.Y., N.Y.
Spring 2003 Form to Function,,John Michael Kohler Arts Center
Dec. 2002 3 person show, Bettcher Gallery, Miami, Fla., curated by Cora Bettcher.
Jan.-May 2002 Floor to Ceiling, 3 person show, Aldrich Museum , Ridgefield, Conn., curated by Harry Philbrick.
Jan. March 2002 Imprints, Punctures & Other Pointed Maneuverings, paintings and sculpture, University of Rhode Island, curated by Judith Tolnick.
Nov. 2001-Jan.2002 LOUDLY MINIMAL quietly baroque, highlights of 1/4 Hora Project Space, Elgin, Texas, Group Exhibition, Blue Star Gallery, San Antonio, Tx., curated by Margo Sawyer.
Nov. -March 2001 The Chasanoff Collection, The Mint Museum of Craft & Design, group show of the ChasanoffCollection, Charlotte, NC.
Sept.-Feb.2001 Multiple Sensations, a traveling group show curated by Joe Amrhein, Pierogi, Brooklyn, N.Y. for the Yerba Buena Center in San Francisco, Post Gallery in Los Angeles, and Block Art Space in Kansas City, Mo.
Sept.- Nov. 2000 Threshold, Virginia Center for the Arts, traveling show, curated by Andrea Inselmann, Virginia Beach, Va.
May-Aug. 2000 Welcome, group show, curated by Jennifer McGregor, Wave Hill, Bronx, N.Y.
Sept. -Nov.1999 Best of the Season, Aldrich Museum, Ridgefield, Ct.
Dec. 1998- Working in Brooklyn, 4-person show, curated Charlotta
June 1999 Kotik, Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, N.Y.
April – Aug. 1999 Threshold: Invoking the Domestic in Contemporary Art, curated by Andrea Inselmann, John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Sheboygan, WI
Sept. 1999 Rage for Art, inaugural show of artists who have had one-person shows, Pierogi 2000, Brooklyn, N.Y.
Summer 1998 Southern Exposure, curated by Sean Gelb, Ambrosino Gallery,Miami.
May 1998 Annual Benefit Show, The New Museum, N.Y., N.Y.
March 1998 Out of the Frying Pan, curated by Linda Gottesfield, Pace University Art Gallery, Pace University, N.Y., N.Y.
Nov. 1997 Redefinitions: A View From Brooklyn, curated by Sue Joyce, Main Art Gallery, Cal State Fullerton, Fullerton, Ca.
Sept., Oct. 1997 New York Drawers, drawing files, curated by Shawn Cummins, Gasworks, London and Corner House, curated by Joe Amrhein, Manchester, England.
Jan. 1997 Slad, curated by Janice Krasnow and Mary Jones, Apex Art, N.Y., N.Y.
Sept. 1996 A Walk in the Woods,, sculpture, curated by Karen Shaw, Islip Art Museum, East Islip, N.Y.
June 1996 Downtown Art Exchange, Bronwyn Keenan, sculpture
May 1996 Gramercy International Art Exhibition, Gracy Mansion and Fred Dorfman Art Projects, Gramercy Park Hotel, N.Y., N.Y.
May 1996 Annual Benefit Show, The New Museum, N.Y., N.Y.
March 1996 Wish You Were Here, Bronwyn Keenan, sculpture.
March 1996 Annual Benefit Show, White Columns, N.Y., N.Y.
Dec. 1995 Multiples, Pierogi 2000, sculpture edition, Brooklyn, N.Y.
May 1995 Way Cool, Exit Art, The First World. sculpture, biennial survey show, N.Y., N.Y.
Dec. 1994 Furniture, Jack Tilton Gallery, sculpture, N.Y., N.Y.
Oct. 1994 Backroom, Four Walls, sculpture, 2 person show, Brooklyn, N.Y.
Fall 1994 New York Biennial of Glass, Robert Lehman Gallery, Urban Glass, sculpture, Brooklyn, N.Y.
Jan 1994 Photonominal, photo-based sculpture, The Forum Gallery, Jamestown, N.Y.
Jan. 1993 Boundaries, Light, Paint and Constructions, sculpture, 148 Gallery, N.Y., N.Y.
1992 Body and Soul, photography, curated by Laura Battle and Kiki Smith, Warren St. Gallery, Hudson, N.Y.
1992 Against the Tide, photo-based sculpture, Pelham Art Center, Pelham, N.Y.
1992 Travel and Leisure Show, photography, Four Walls, Brooklyn, N.Y.
1992 Neurotic Art Show, sculpture, Artist’s Space, N.Y., N.Y.
1991 Photo Projects, photo-based sculpture, White Columns, N.Y., N.Y.
1990 Manipulation and Photography, The Gallery, photo-based sculpture, group show, N.Y., N.Y.
1987 Four Corners of Abstract Painting, , paintings, curated by Bill Arning, White Columns N.Y., N.Y.
HONORS AND AWARDS
2014 Frazier Teaching Award, given to one full-time and one part-time faculty member each year in recognition of teaching excellence 2011, 07, 02, 1998, 94, 91 Faculty Development Grant, R.I.School of Design, Prov., R.I.
1999 New York Foundation for the Arts, sculpture, N.Y., N.Y.
1989 Symposium Participant, Art and Education,R.I. School of Design.
1988 Mass.Council-on-the Arts State Lottery Grant, for production of painting for the Marine Museum of Fall River.
1981 Ford Foundation Summer Grant, Yale University, given to 5 students.
1980 Ford Foundation Grant, Yale University, given during the year to promote special projects.