Jonathan Peyser

Peyser, a self-taught artist, who also served as Curator of Public Art for New York in three city administrations, has been sculpting for over 20 years. He holds a B.A. in English and history from the University of Rochester. Notable exhibitions in which he has participated include, among others: “Wish You Were Here,” a downtown exhibition in honor of 9/11, with Sol Lewitt, Larry Rivers, and Kiki Smith; and the New York Annual Artwalk, Coalition for the Homeless benefit exhibition, with artist Joseph Kosuth. Peyser’s formalist abstract sculpture is mostly suggestive, carving out ample space for one to dwell in his or her imagination. His art quietly insists that words don’t accommodate all perceptions, and that we consider the use of new materials, forms, juxtapositions and emotions when looking.Many of the sculptures here are made with used horse traces. These are the heavy gauge horse harness straps that work horses use to pull a carriage or a plow. Here the artist revalues remnants of leather, cast-offs, by making them into a new type of drawing. Each trace line, its placement, turning and twisting, represents a decision. The result of the “drawing” is usually graphic, if not uniquely calligraphic.For Peyser, the traces symbolize work, and, in a sense, grace.