Julian Pozzi earned a BFA at the University of Texas at Austin and an MFA at the California Institute of the Arts. He’s had solo shows at 1234 Gallery (LA), Jeff Bailey Gallery (NYC), and Songs For Presidents (NYC). Group shows have been at White Columns and Atelier Cardenas Bellanger (Paris), among other venues. His work has been written about and reviewed in the New York Times and Particules Journal, and he’s a recent resident at Jentel Artist Residency (WY), SIM Artist Residency (Iceland) and the Vermont Studio Center.
"My work is based in part on images of naturist resorts and hotels that have been culled from internet searches. The paintings use a formal, gridded language that draws upon mosaics, drawing, and science fiction in equal measure. The hotels, resorts, and other naturist spaces are rendered in various degrees of fidelity, with an attention that wavers from faithful reproduction of salient architectural details to outright improvisation that often veers into anthropomorphism. This creates a (sometimes precarious) balance in each painting that hovers between articulating the demands of faithful reproduction and responding to the pictorial and formal possibilities of line, color, and brushwork."
Tell us a little about yourself and your background in the arts.
I'm originally from Texas, but I also spent some time on the East Coast as a child visiting museums in NYC, Philadelphia, and Washington. I originally came to making art through skateboarding (which is a pretty creative endeavor in and of itself!). After getting my BFA in Texas at the University of Texas at Austin, where I studied photography, I went to grad school at the California Institute of the Arts in what was then the photography program.
What kind of work are you currently making?
These days I'm sticking with small and medium-sized oil paintings. I've always made drawings (in fact, I used to make and show drawings exclusively for years) as a way to both warm up before starting the day and also to help expand my mark making and formal language.
What is a day like in the studio for you?
If the weather's cooperative, I usually ride my bike from my home in Jackson Heights, Queens to my studio in Ridgewood (also in Queens, natch). If I'm having trouble starting back on a painting or need to clear my mind a bit, I'll make a few quick ink drawings. After that, I'll realize I need some coffee and/or I'm hungry. After that, I'm ready to paint. I definitely try and take a lot of breaks, since a lot of the areas of the paintings can be somewhat exacting and repetitive. Sometime 5 or 6 hours later (when it's well into the evening) I'll head back home on my bike.
What are you looking at right now and/or reading?
I really enjoy scrolling through my Instagram feed and seeing other artists' work, especially if they're works in progress in their studios. Instagram is a mixed blessing, but it really is great to see what's happening in other studios and can definitely be a motivating and inspiring force. There are a lot of artists that I look at on a regular basis, but I do have some perennial favorites: Paul Klee, Arshile Gorky, and Joan Brown, to name just a few. I also greatly appreciate conceptual art from its inception to today.
Where can we find more of your work?