(American b. 1975; resides in Chicago, IL)
From depictions of himself sliding nude into a hotel pool, to the pastoral scenes of his grandmother’s wallpaper, the loose cohesion of Jason Lazarus’ series Self Portraits as an Artist is atypically broad and ranging. The aberration is fitting for an approach that proves consistently dubious of the art world and its workings. Some of the pictures reference particular artists (quoting Jemima Stehli’s nude portraits, for instance, or alluding to the myth and mystery surrounding Bas Jan Ader) and some poke fun at art galleries and museums, while still others mix the personal with the performative as Lazarus considers from many angles just what it means to make art or be an artist.
Born in Kansas City, Lazarus studied marketing at DePaul University (BA, 1998) and photography at Columbia College Chicago (MFA, 2003). He is the recipient of multiple grants from the Illinois Art Council, and his solo exhibitions in Chicago include 12×12 New Artists/New Work at Museum of Contemporary Art (2006), and then finally, I remembered at Bucket Rider Gallery (2005), and Congenital:Grafts at International Museum of Surgical Science (2004) and University of Illinois Union Art Space (2003). Lazarus teaches for Columbia College Chicago, Robert Morris College, and the Marwen Foundation.