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Who is Jere Smith?

Over the last 50 years, my eclectic background in art has included involvement in many exhibitions and gallery affiliations including the organizing and curating of many theme-based art events. There have also been graphic design and editorial illustration assignments, the teaching of art, and curating same.

From Humboldt State University, I have degrees in art and psychology, referencing my two favorite topics, creativity and human behavior. Although I later fell in love with "real" artists like Michelangelo, Magritte, Max Ernst, Marcel Duchamp, and illustrators like Maxfield Parrish, Norman Rockwell, and Milton Glaser, the seminal influence in my art-making and creativity has to have been early comics and cartoons—all those rubbery, goofy characters. More importantly, it was viewing reality and culture through the subversive, funhouse lens of late '50s Mad Magazine. Weaned and art-damaged on this as a youth, such imagery and informed subversive wit played a big part in activating my imagination and laying the foundation of what I call Neocompostmodern Art— meaning today's interpretation of yesterday's vision of tomorrow…allowed to mulch. I continue to draw inspiration from those formative years.

How I Get Big Ideas

With everything, from conceptual illustration to fine art and beyond (including the making of objects), I hope to convey a personal and skewed sense of humor and style…where the conceptual quotient is high and often replete with the resonance of word against image. I delight in roaming around this cartoon-based surreal estate with its illusion and allusion…and I’m forever seeking a meaningful absurdity to the larger world. At least that's what it says in my notes.

—Jere Smith

Download Jere’s Resumé in PDF form. (86kB)

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