Patrick Earl Hammie is an American visual artist best known for his large-scale portraits and figurative paintings that draw from art history and visual culture to examine cultural identity, social equity, and critical aspects of gender and race today. Hammie’s body of work is defined by his ongoing engagement with the history of painting, and his use of scale, expression, and emotive subject matter recall the painterly gestures of the Baroque and Romantic periods. Considering such conventions in a contemporary context, he delivers fresh ideals of marginalized bodies that both disturb the existing cannon and normalize their presence in public art space and discourse.
Birth Throes, a collection of portraits and allegories, meditates on the relationships between the artist and his mother, mortality, and the capacity for black experience to disrupt, diversify, and enrich American culture. In this new body of work, Hammie continues to mine figurative painting’s capacity to address societal issues alongside personal ones. The series pictures matrilineality, the effort and peril towards birth, and the onset of one’s path. Informed by personal experience, shifting American demographics that forecast a black and brown majority, and overwhelming cases of regulated execution and incarceration, Hammie presents a narrative that explores familial bonds, the processing of trauma, and the ways we value people of color. A selection of charcoal drawings from the artist’s 2007 series Oedipus will be exhibited alongside the new body of work.
Patrick Earl Hammie was born in 1981 in New Haven, Connecticut. His work has been exhibited widely throughout the U.S. and abroad, and is included in eminent public collections including the John Michael Kohler Art Center, William Benton Museum of Art and the JP Morgan Chase Art Collection. He has received grants and awards from institutions including the Alliance of Artists Communities with the Joyce Foundation, Indianapolis Art Center, Puffin Foundation and Tanne Foundation, and was named an “Artist to Watch” by the International Review of African American Art. Birth Throes is Hammie’s second solo exhibition with Kruger Gallery, and his first presentation in Marfa.
Opening reception • Friday, October 6 from 5–8pm
Conversation and Cocktails: Patrick Earl Hammie • Sunday, October 8 at 12:30pm