Born in Edmonton, Alberta, Jeff Sylvester first began his art career over twenty years ago after graduating with graphic design from MacEwan University. Sylvester’s work can be seen in private and corporate collections all across Canada and US.
Through an intricate process of layering thick coats of clear epoxy between paint on wood panel, Jeff Sylvester is able to create dynamic compositions that move and shift with the changing light throughout the day.
Using haunting motifs of communication and aircraft towers, Sylvester's paintings explore the integration of technology found in natural landscapes.
Sum of Its Parts - Artist’s Statement
The common element in this body of work, whether subtly or entirely featured on their own, are the groupings of birds. They make their way across the sky as one cohesive unit, morphing into seemingly choreographed shapes and patterns. These mumurations symbolize our sense of community and the ability to become more than our own individual sums; to work and transform as a group.
Placing these groups of birds in direct relation to communication towers creates an alternative or underlying narrative that speaks to group behaviour in the context of social media. The space between a community that works together to achieve some collective benefit and a community that works to move and direct you to an ideology that isn’t necessarily based on your own beliefs, continues to become less and less open.
Most of the landscapes that create a space for these birds to exist, whether it’s rural, urban or suburban, are typical to Edmonton and Alberta as a whole, but easily have a personal familiarity to anyone outside our province.
A process of layering acrylic and clear epoxy on birch panels imparts these scenarios with a shimmering, multi dimensional appearance.