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Intentionally ambiguous 

- GNARLY: -  - IMAGE COURTESY OF JAMIE COXON
  • IMAGE COURTESY OF JAMIE COXON
  • GNARLY:

Whether he likes it or not, artist Jamie Coxon gravitates toward tedious projects. Coxon, who’s spent the last 10 years perfecting his craft of woodcuts and printmaking, described the process as nuanced and highly meditative.

Generally, the artist generates a rough sketch before creating a woodcut, although, he says, “I’m usually pretty anxious just to get into carving. The marks of the carving tool are a lot different from what you would just sketch. Usually I would just start with a rough outline and get right into it. I’m pretty familiar with the carving tools and the different marks you can get with the tools at that point. But a small block can take anywhere from 10
to 20 hours.”

The tedium pays off in the quality of the end product, and in appreciation from other artists, admiring what Coxon can do with a difficult medium.

For inspiration, the Cal State Fullerton grad looks toward alchemic imagery and old German woodcuts from the 16th and 17th century. His current body of work reveals a stunning attention to detail, as well as continuity in theme. Certain motifs—a feather, a pyramid—are repeated and expounded upon throughout the show.

“It’s a reference to pyramids … to ancient cultures,” Coxon said of the feather-and-pyramid pattern. “It’s also like a geological kind of rock form. But it’s also intentionally ambiguous. Those two forms are man-made and naturalistic simultaneously.”

The results of his last five years of effort are currently available for poring over and admiring at San Luis Art Supply, located at 1116 Morro St. in downtown San Luis Obispo. Don’t miss Coxon’s reception on Friday, Feb. 25, from 6 to 9 p.m., presented by shop owner Neal Breton.

“I’m stoked to have a space to show, like Neal’s, where some younger artists can have a voice,” Coxon said.

Those are artists who, he added, have something to show that’s “a little bit different from what you would see around town.”

At last!

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