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Jeremy Burleson, Luis Estrada, and Anne Meade: Dreamscapes, Mind Maps, and Hearts’ Desires, Selected By Christine Wong Yap (online exhibition)

About the exhibition

Jeremy Burleson, Luis Estrada, and Anne Meade share clear artistic voices and recurring motifs in their artworks. I selected artworks that had salient emotional and psychological resonances for me.

Burleson’s ink drawings of balloons suggest hope and joy; yet the untethered strings foreshadow loss. His stacks of turtles are curious; one turtle’s protective shell becomes other turtles’ stepping stones. There are hints of fear, excitement and danger in drawings of an undulating rattlesnake, a human who appears to be a hospital worker, and what might be an illustration of a dream about flying. Just as the tiniest turtles bear the weight of the largest ones, the prone sleeper becomes the road for the plane’s scissor-jacked wheels. Each drawing seemed to expand outward to fill the space of the paper. I infer a similar sense of expansiveness in Burleson’s attraction to these personal motifs.

Estrada makes dense amalgamations of text and image, often interpreting weather reports. The association between weather and psychological states (brighter days, stormy weather) is second nature. It just makes sense, like shining suns anthropomorphized with smiley faces. But Estrada’s drawings most resemble mind-maps: non-linear, spatialized, note-taking diagrams. As such, they offer a glimpse into the artist’s concerns during the time of the drawing, but not into an overarching message or conclusive statement. Motivations remain hidden. Clarity requires insight.

Anne Meade’s ceramics and drawings impart her adoration of the feline. Cats sit on the edge of a bowl. Cats form a landscape. Assembled, Meade’s cats convey togetherness, affinity, and sharing. Depicted solo, they offer a sense of contented coziness. This happy sensibility is underscored with recurring rainbow stripes. These works are sentimental in the best possible way—unabashedly expressing the heart’s yearning for those we cherish, and the comfort they give.

About the selector

Christine Wong Yap is a project-based artist who explores psychological wellbeing. She often works in printmaking, drawing, sculpture, installation, and social practice. Recently, she has explored belonging, collaboration, and interdependence by conducting surveys and presenting findings via publications, site-specific signs, drawings, and maps.

Yap was a longtime resident of the San Francisco Bay Area before relocating to Queens, NY in 2010. She holds a BFA and MFA from the California College of the Arts. She has exhibited extensively in the S.F. Bay Area, as well as in New York; Los Angeles; Portland, OR; Manila; and Poland. Her work has been supported by the Queens Council on the Arts, the Jerome Foundation, and the Center for Cultural Innovation. She has participated in 13 artists’ residency and studio programs. In 2018–2019, she was the inaugural artist-in-residence at the Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society at UC Berkeley.