We Hold Your Gaze, 2021
Ink, gouache, watercolor, acrylic marker on paper
30” x 22”
Jessie Mott is a Chicago-based artist whose work spans an array of media, including drawing, painting, ceramics and collaborative projects. She is best known for her watercolor drawings of hybrid creatures that explore a perverse fascination with the “natural” world where erotic fantasy, queer monstrosity, and the threat of violence, both real and imagined, coalesce within portrait-like frames. Animations made with the artist and writer Steve Reinke have been screened widely at national and international venues such as International Film Festival Rotterdam, VIDEOEX International Experimental Film & Video Festival in Zürich and the Whitney Biennial. Mott has also participated in numerous group and solo shows including Devening Projects + Editions and the Hyde Park Art Center.
About Like Queer Animals: We Hold Your Gaze
The collaborative team known as Like Queer Animals (LQA), composed of artist Jessie Mott and writer and queer scholar Chantal Nadeau, presents the exhibition We Hold Your Gaze. Mott and Nadeau’s multidisciplinary practice mobilizes various forms of writing, visual art and performance, revealing an abiding interest in researching and reshaping material and cultural creature morphologies. Their gender and species-bending creatures desire to claim public spaces where non-conforming bodies have been historically excluded. The creatures, with their multiple sets of eyes, colorful hybrid bodies, and wild emotional scale, provide alternative ways to occupy and feel within public spaces.
LQA’s approach activates a queer archive of emotions in an effort to “collect feelings, store them, or save them” as a means to live and survive. Too often contained privately, these feelings find embodiment in their creatures.