Jonas Wood (b. 1977, Boston) makes paintings that can be classified as a variety of different genres, including portraits, still lifes, landscapes, and interior scenes. In each of these, however, his work reflects an instantly recognizable vision of the contemporary world, as well as a personal approach to subject matter defined by his affinities and experiences. Its warmth is matched by a quasi-abstract logic that breaks pictures down into layered compositions of geometry, pattern, and color. Wood works at every scale, and maintains active drawing and printmaking practices, each of which helps him generate techniques that he eventually uses in paintings. Conjuring depth using flat forms—his process involves collage-based studies in which he works with photographs, breaking images apart and reassembling them—Wood probes the boundary between the new and the familiar, integrating emotionally resonant material from everyday life. Painting becomes a way to freshen the artist’s—and the viewer’s—perception of the world.
Jonas Wood has been the subject of solo and two-person exhibitions at the Dallas Museum of Art (2019); Museum Voorlinden, Wassenaar, the Netherlands (with Shio Kusaka, 2017); Lever House, New York (2014); and Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2010). Other solo projects include Still Life with Two Owls, a monumental picture covering the façade of The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (2016—2018); Shelf Still Life, High Line Billboard, High Line Art, New York (2014); and LAXART Billboard and Façade, LAXART, Los Angeles (2014). Recent group exhibitions include Psychic Wounds: On Art and Trauma, The Warehouse, Dallas (2020); One Day at a Time: Manny Farber and Termite Art, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (2018); and Los Angeles: A Fiction, Astrup Fearnley Museet, Oslo (2016) and Musée d'art contemporain de Lyon, France (2017). His work is in the permanent collections of many institutions, including the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Guggenheim Museum, New York; The Broad, Los Angeles; Museum of Modern Art, New York; and Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. In 2019, Phaidon published the first monograph dedicated to Wood’s paintings and drawings. Wood lives and works in Los Angeles.