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PRINT Summer 1979

Oliver Lee Jackson: Forms that Feeling Takes

OLIVER LEE JACKSON BUILDS multilayered fields of radiant oil color on canvases whose monumental size—6 feet 9 inches high by 15 feet long—matches monumental intentions.

With its aggressive scale, color and touch, and its sense of revelatory content as well, Jackson’s work stands squarely in the modern expressionist tradition. Unlike many expressionists, however, Jackson does not “distort” form or intensify texture and tonality simply to heighten emotional impact. Indeed his forms and figures are not distorted at all. They are accurate images that require their peculiar anatomy and the particular layers of texture and tonality in which they find themselves floating in order to exist at all.

Clearly, Jackson is more interested in an overall harmony than in merely heightened emotional expression, but his is a free and rhythmically complex harmony that is the visual equivalent of the improvisations

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