Jesse Harrod

New Jersey
Artist in Residence, 2024

Artist Statement

Creating both large and mid-scale sculptures, I utilize what I term “femmy detritus” – vibrant, lowbrow materials such as sequins, fringe, and sculpey commonly associated with hobby crafts. My artistic exploration revolves around gender, queerness, and their intersections, shedding light on how specific materials and associated bodies are labeled as “trash”. By repurposing discarded materials, I aim to foster insurgent imaginations of queer-feminist survival. My transformative process animates the sexual and sensual qualities of materials, crafting arrangements that challenge normative gender conventions. Beyond highlighting the convergence and divergence between “disposable” objects and people, my work underscores the vibrancy of materials, portraying them with personalities and attitudes beyond human characterization. I envision my sculptures as inhabitants of dynamic queer communities, offering novel ways of existence, understanding, and connection. Employing a maximalist aesthetic, my installations aim to convey the enormity of emotions amidst political structures confining queer bodies, utilizing a direct form of address reminiscent of 1970s feminist activism to amplify the voice of queer-feminist militancy in artistic production.

While at Headlands

During my residency at Headlands, I plan to concurrently engage in two projects. The first involves two large-scale woven/macramé forms for an upcoming exhibition. Simultaneously, I aim to create a stop-motion animation inspired by drawings spanning the past few years. This dual-project approach serves to manage physical strain and maintain a continuous creative flow. The uninterrupted time at Headlands is paramount, allowing me to immerse myself in the artistic process and achieve my objectives for the residency. The dedicated focus on both tactile and digital mediums underscores my commitment to multifaceted artistic exploration. With the conducive environment provided by Headlands, I am confident in delving deeply into my work, harnessing the unique setting to bring forth the fruition of my creative aspirations