Happenstance: Jerry Jeanmard

21 September 2023 - 20 September 2024 New York

Happenstance: an exhibition of new collages by Jerry Jeanmard, mounted by the Rebecca Hossack Art Gallery as part of their on-going collaboration with Billy Reid, New York.


Houston-based artist Jeanmard deploys a diverse array of found vintage papers - ephemera from high and low culture, and from the round of daily life - to create playfully subversive images of people, alive with individuality and character.


Happenstance brings together a swashbuckling pirate (who has plundered the Victoria and Albert Museum gift shop), a gentleman casually sporting an Ibis on his head, an overdressed guardsman wielding a magic wand, a botanist with a rainbow collar and a chartered accountant - amongst a distinguished host of others.


In making these extraordinary images, Jeanmard draws on a collection of papers amassed over some sixty years. There are laundry tags, children’s drawings, cinema passes, hamburger wrappers, bus tickets, bingo cards, and postage stamps; fragments of Chinese calligraphic notes, tiger posters from India, and Italian marbled papers (collected from his travels).


The artist works intuitively, without a set plan. Beginning with an attraction to a color or shape, Jeanmard builds and layers his materials, gradually transforming the abstracted forms into figures. He pays close attention, always, to negative space – ripping, cutting, and carving out shapes to find moments of ease amidst a jumble of imagery. It is a technique that invites, or demands, rapid decision-making. ‘I love happenstance,’ explains Jeanmard. ‘There is joy in the process of discovery.’ Born in Lafayette, Louisiana, in 1945, Jerry Jeanmard studied at the School of Visual Arts, New York and the University of Southwestern Louisiana. His creative life spans over five decades, from his career as an illustrator and graphic designer in the 1970s and 80s, to his work as an interior designer in the 90s, 00s and 10s, and, in the past ten years, his emergence as a fine artist of note.


Happenstance is Jeanmard's third solo exhibition with the Rebecca Hossack Art Gallery and his first at Billy Reid, New York.


Billy Reid

94 Charles Street

New York, NY 10014

Mon-Sat (11am-6pm)

Sun (12pm-6pm)