ZACHARY DALE SIMONSON
Zachary Simonson was born in Wisconsin, where he received his BFA in Painting from the University of Wisconsin Whitewater. He currently lives in Philadelphia, where he received his MFA from The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Recent group exhibition venues include Pentimenti Gallery, Tiger Strikes Asteroid (Philadelphia, PA), The Wassaic Project (Wassaic, NY) and Anna Zorina Gallery (New York, NY).
With painting, I process memory through systems of visual organization. Primarily using isometric projection as a framework, I build an architectural overworld constructed from familiar places that morphs into a new, invented world. I then occupy these spaces with characters, experiences and memories coded into symbols, much like a key on a map. This acts both as a narrative device within this dream world, and as a notational system, to analyze the details and patterns of thinking in my own life.
As my practice involves building narratives through space, the book format served as both an extension and a departure. While my work normally develops narrative in a singular space, the linear structure of the book guides the viewer down a certain path of exploration; more Crash Bandicoot than Super Mario 64. Repeating motifs throughout are also a way to translate the open traversal of my previous works into this more directed format. They serve as a reminder of the place explored, in the same way that memories return to us, as well as an indicator of the passage of time.
Similarly, the cutouts act as portals from one place or idea to another that operate both in conceptual and literal space.
As with much of my work, this project plays with the idea of revealing and concealing, walking the line between the desire to share moments of emotional significance while maintaining a level of privacy.