Last week, Hi-Fructose visited the studio of painter Jessica Hess. The artist’s photo-realistic oil paintings depicting graffiti-laden landscapes first caught our eye when she showed with Kevin Cyr a couple years back (covered here), and we were excited to see her new work as she was preparing for ‘It Finds You’, opening this Saturday, September 3rd at White Walls. For her new body of work, which includes large and small scale paintings as well as some sculpture, Hess explores the relationship of street art and graffiti to the viewer. As a longtime resident of New England, Hess often found herself proactively searching for quality street art, no easy feat in the vast forests and small towns of the Berkshires. More often than not, the discovery of colorful tags occurred only when she wasn’t expecting it, hiking through the forest only to stumble upon an old abandoned building covered in graffiti, fueling the feeling of this mysterious world and its unexpected appearances.
In Hess’ recent cross country relocation to San Francisco she found a veritable survey of trains and buildings and after dutifully documenting each, has spent the last year recreating the scenes of her encounters and adventures. Hi-Fructose correspondent Shaun Roberts recently got an intimate look inside the artist’s studio, you can find her work, or somehow let her work find you, below.