Featured Artist Jerry Belland
Tommy is Real, 22”x 30”, Acrylic on paper, by Jerry Belland
He has a graduate degree in Art from U.W.M. “I was never comfortable in grad school,” he says. “I always felt that everyone else knew something I didn’t.”
He taught public school for 34 years at Racine’s inner city Horlick High School. “Most of my friends on Facebook
are former students. They remember my classes vividly. It was the most important work I’ve done.”
Belland has exhibited widely in the state, and his work is in many Wisconsin public collections. “For a while there, the Percent for Art program was very good to me,” he recalls.
In 2011 he won one of four Racine Art Museum Fellowships. His solo show is currently on display at Wustum Museum in Racine. “The Fellowship year pulled a lot of strings together for me,” he says. “I finally have a vague idea of what I’m doing.”
Part of what he’s doing is rediscovering cartooning, an art form he excelled at while in high school. He talks of the “Old Jerry” channeling the “Young Jerry”: and considers this thought process a collaboration.
“I want to think that these cartoons have their own spin,” he says. “I want them to be cartoons that Carl Jung could have made. The deeper and darker they get, the more people see them as funny. Life is a mess. Humor can help. Humor is radical honesty.” See more of Jerry’s work on page 4, and online at: www.jerrybellandart.net.
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