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ARTIST STATEMENT


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ARTIST STATEMENT


 

Dameon Lester’s work resides in the space of tension between ordered perfection and disordered detritus in the natural world. Elegant sculptural forms, which at first appear flawless in their careful patterning and rigorous manufacture, upon closer inspection reveal subtle disruptions or surprising deviations. Through a labor-intensive and repetitive process, Lester transforms simple craft materials like pipe cleaners or plywood into dimensionally patterned vessels and geometric landscapes. Lester combines his interest in recycled and devalued materials with an instinctive practice that build upon itself, compelling the base units of his constructions to multiply and proliferate rhizomatically.

These evocative forms resonate with minimalism, modernist design, and color field painting, while also engaging the open-celled skeletal structure of Radiolaria, microscopic plankton-like creatures that date to the Paleozoic era. There is not a simple aesthetic dichotomy between human production and the natural world, both realms control, influence, and bleed into each other. Vacillating between domestic objects and mysterious natural phenomena, Lester’s sculptures suggest an uneasy continuum between the known and unknown, as well as the controlled and controlling elements of the world that surrounds us.

 
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CURRICULUM VITAE


CURRICULUM VITAE


 

BIO

1973   Born in Concord, North Carolina  .  Currently lives and works in Austin, Texas

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EDUCATION

2005   Completed Coursework for MA  .  Special Education  .  California State University  .  Los Angeles, CA
2004   Teaching Credential  .  Special Education  .  California State University  .  Los Angeles, CA
2000   MFA  .  Emphasis in Sculpture & Art Theory  .  University of Nevada  .  Las Vegas, NV
1995   BFA  .  Emphasis in Sculpture  .  Virginia Commonwealth University  .  School of the Arts  .  Richmond, VA
1995   Study Abroad  .  Technikon Natal [ Durban University of Technology ]  .  Durban, South Africa
1993-94   Study Abroad  .  Loughborough College of Art and Design [ Loughborough University ]  .  Loughborough, England

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SOLO EXHIBITIONS

2011   Unnatural Process  .  Fifth Floor Gallery  .  Los Angeles, CA
2010   Kunstmilch Presents: Dameon Lester  .  Display Case Reutilization Project  .  California State University  .  Long Beach, CA
2009   The Ethnocentric Nature of Line  .  Irvine Valley College Art Gallery  .  Irvine, CA
2009   Works of Paper  .  Fifth Floor Gallery  .  Los Angeles, CA
2000   Fantastic Plastic: Shapescapes  .  Nevada Institute for Contemporary Art  .  Las Vegas, NV
1999   Fuzbreed: The Halfway Showing  .  Grant Hall Gallery, UNLV  .  Las Vegas, NV

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GROUP EXHIBITIONS

2017

Fountain  .  St. Edward’s University Fine Arts Gallery  .  Austin, TX
City of Austin’s TEMPO Public Art Exhibition  .  Manchaca Library & Edward Rendon, Sr. Park  .  Austin, TX
The Contemporary Austin’s Crit Group 2017  .  grayDUCK Gallery  .  Austin, TX
West Austin Studio Tour  .  de stijl | PODIUM FOR ART  .  Austin, TX
DUE WEST!  .  Dougherty Arts Center  .  Austin, TX
The People's Gallery  .  Austin City Hall  .  Austin, TX

2016

Anthropocene  .  grayDUCK Gallery  .  Austin, TX
West Austin Studio Tour  .  Marja Spearman’s Studio  .  Austin, TX
DUE WEST!  .  Dougherty Arts Center  .  Austin, TX
Fuzzy  .  Art for the People Gallery  .  Austin, TX
The People's Gallery  .  Austin City Hall  .  Austin, TX

2015

With Love  .  Fifth Floor Gallery  .  Los Angeles, CA
East Austin Studio Tour  .  Canopy  .  Austin, TX
Art Auction  .  Habitable Spaces  .  Kingsbury, TX
Almost Nothing  .  Northern-Southern  .  Austin, TX
Construct  .  CAMIBAart  .  Austin, TX
West Austin Studio Tour  .  Austin, TX
DUE WEST!  .  University Park  .  Austin, TX
Art City Austin  .  Austin Art Pavilion  .  Austin, TX
The People's Gallery  .  Austin City Hall  .  Austin, TX

2014

Art POP  .  Studio 8 Architects  .  Austin, TX
Art in Public  .  Austin-Bergstrom International Airport  .  Austin, TX
ART for CLARE  .  Silent Art Auction  .  Bergamot Station  .  Santa Monica, CA
West Austin Studio Tour  .  Austin, TX
DUE WEST!  .  Lincoln Village  .  Austin, TX
100-4-100  .  Silent & Live Art Auction  .  University Galleries I + II  .  San Marcos, TX

2013

ART for CLARE  .  Silent Art Auction  .  Bergamot Station  .  Santa Monica, CA
REDUX  .  Desotorow Gallery  .  Savannah, GA
Group Hug!!!  .  The Flex Space at Pump Project Satellite  .  Austin, TX
The People's Gallery  .  Austin City Hall  .  Austin, TX

2012

ART for CLARE  .  Silent Art Auction  .  Bergamot Station  .  Santa Monica, CA
West Austin Studio Tour  .  grayDUCK Gallery  .  Austin, TX
I’m A Frayed Knot  .  Frank M. Doyle Arts Pavilion  .  Costa Mesa, CA
BIG and BRIGHT: New Work from Texas  .  Southwestern College Art Gallery  .  Chula Vista, CA

2011

Pattern Plan  .  grayDUCK Gallery  .  Austin, TX
ART for CLARE  .  Silent Art Auction  .  Bergamot Station  .  Santa Monica, CA

2010

ART for CLARE  .  Silent Art Auction  .  Bergamot Station  .  Santa Monica, CA
OsCene 2010  .  Laguna Art Museum  .  Laguna Beach, CA  .  Grace Kook-Anderson, Curator
CURATE THIS!  .  BECA: Bridge for Emerging Contemporary Art  .  Online Exhibition

2009

NotBig  .  Logsdon 1909 Gallery  .  Chicago, IL  .  Doug Stapleton, Juror
Geometric Sequence: Random or Otherwise  .  Caladan Gallery  .  Cambridge, MA
DigitalArt.LA  .  Los Angeles Center for Digital Art / LACDA  .  Los Angeles, CA  .  Rita Gonzalez, LACMA, Juror
MOCA FRESH! Silent Auction  .  The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA  .  Los Angeles, CA
OC Art Grant  .  Juried Catalog  .  Santa Ana, CA  .  Phyllis J. Lutjeans, Juror  .  Honorable Mention
Roll Up Long Beach  .  Jet Studios  .  Long Beach, CA
Mail Art Festival  .  Galeri Shah Alam  .  Persiaran Tasek, Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia
The Art of Communication  .  Gallery RFD  .  Swainsboro, GA
11th Annual Postcards From the Edge Benefit  .  VISUAL AIDS  .  New York, NY

2008

Naturally Synthetic  .  @space Gallery  .  Santa Ana, CA

2003

Vegas Baby!  .  Elevation Gallery  .  Atlanta, GA

2001

Artificial Structures  .  Raid Projects  .  Los Angeles, CA

2000

MOMA Members Show  .  Alumni Center & Grant Gallery, UNLV  .  Las Vegas, NV
Student Art Show  .  Donna Beam Fine Art Gallery, UNLV  .  Las Vegas, NV  .  Kim Dingle, Juror  .  Juror’s Merit Award
New American Talent: The Fifteenth Exhibition  .  TFAA  .  Multiple Locations, Texas  .  David Pagel, Juror  .  Juror’s Merit Award

1999

Tri-Art Show  .  Government Center  .  Las Vegas, NV
Annual Auction: Y2Khaos  .  Nevada Institute for Contemporary Art  .  Las Vegas, NV
Graduate Student Exhibition  .  Marjorie Barrick Museum  .  Las Vegas, NV
Student Art Show  .  Donna Beam Fine Art Gallery, UNLV  .  Las Vegas, NV  .  Ingrid Calame, Juror
MOCA Members Show  .  Nevada Institute for Contemporary Art  .  Las Vegas, NV
Unctuous Youth  .  ActionSpace  .  Los Angeles, CA  .  Steven Criqui, Curator

1998

Gradbag  .  Grant Hall Gallery, UNLV  .  Las Vegas, NV
The Lab  .  Las Vegas, NV
Subversive Souvenirs  .  Contemporary Arts Center Gallery  .  Las Vegas, NV  .  John DeFazio, Curator

1997

Public Installation  .  Northern Illinois University  .  DeKalb, IL

1995

Senior Exhibition  .  James Center  .  Richmond, VA
Student Juried Show  .  Anderson Gallery, VCU  .  Richmond, VA
Inaugural Exhibition  .  Durban Arts Center  .  Durban, South Africa

1994

LCAD Student Show  .  Loughborough, England

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BIBLIOGRAPHY

2016   Austin Art Weekly, artwork photograph, Austin, TX. November 2016. Cover. artallianceaustin.org
2016   Caitlin Greenwood, “Behind the Curtain: Big Medium Hosts its Wildly Popular East Austin Studio Tour,” Arts + Culture Texas Magazine (print), November 2016. 42. Arts + Culture Texas (online), October 19, 2016. artsandculturetx.com
2015   Michael Agresta, “Almost Nothing,” Arts + Culture Texas, October 19, 2015. artsandculturetx.com
2015   Arts + Culture Texas Magazine, artwork photograph, Austin, TX. April 2015. 18.
2012   Kate Harrington, “State of the Arts,” Austin Home Magazine 7, no. 4 (Winter 2012): 75.
2011   Samantha Jorgensen, “REVIEW | Pattern Plan, grayDUCK Gallery,” NEXT | AFTER | THIS (art blog),
November 17, 2011. next-after-this.com
2011   Todd Camplin, “Pattern Plan at grayDUCK Gallery,” Mod Austin, October 2011. modaustin.net
2011   Hector Hernandez, “Talking to Dameon Lester,” Art Czar (art blog), September 26, 2011. artczar.wordpress.com
2011   Event Mention with artwork photograph, Glass Tire, September 24, 2011. glasstire.com
2010   Helen Pheby, PhD, Curator, Yorkshire Sculpture ParkCURATE THIS! 2010 — New Art, Publication, November 2010. 18–19.
2009   The District Weekly 3, no. 31, November 11-17, 2009, Long Beach, CA. 5, 25.
2008   Greg Stacy, “Movies, Mulch and Madness at Grand Central Art Center and @Space Gallery,” OC Weekly, November 26, 2008. ocweekly.com
2000   David Pagel, New American Talent: The Fifteenth Exhibition, Show Catalog, Texas Fine Arts Association, February 2000. 7, 30.
1999   Diane Bush, “Tri-Art,” The Connector, October 1999.
1998   John DeFazio, “Exercises in the Theoretically Uncollectible,” Subversive Souvenirs, Spring 1998. 28–29.

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RECOGNITIONS

2017   Austin Critics Table Awards Nominations for Best Group Gallery Exhibition  .  ANTHROPOCENE: Jonas Hart, Dameon Lester & Melissa Loop  .  grayDUCK Gallery
2017   Selected Artist  .  The City of Austin's Art in Public Places TEMPO Program
2017   Art Alliance Austin’s West Picks 2017  .  Showing with Christina Coleman & Jieun Beth Kim at de stijl | PODIUM FOR ART
2017   Artist Residency Grant  .  Chulitna Lodge Artist-In-Residency Program
2017   Selected Artist  .  The Contemporary Austin's Crit Group Program
2016   Shortlisted  .  2017 International Artist-in-Residence Program  .  Artpace
2016   Art Alliance Austin’s West Picks from Industry Experts  .  Fuzzy Exhibition with Susi Brister at Art for the People Gallery
2015   Shortlisted  .  2016 International Artist-in-Residence Program  .  Artpace
2013   Shortlisted  .  2014 International Artist-in-Residence Program  .  Artpace
2010   Artist Residency Grant  .  Vermont Studio Center
2009   Honorable Mention  .  OC Art Grant  .  Phyllis J. Lutjeans, Juror
2005   Apple Teaching Grant  .  CSULA
2000   Juror’s Merit Award  .  UNLV  .  Kim Dingle, Juror
2000   Juror’s Merit Award  .  TFAA  .  David Pagel, Juror
1998-00   Graduate Assistantship  .  UNLV
1997-98   Private Scholarship  .  UNLV
1995   Undergraduate Exchange Scholarship  .  VCU – Technikon Natal
1993-94   Undergraduate Exchange Scholarship  .  VCU – Loughborough College of Art and Design

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RESIDENCIES

2017   Fish Factory / The Creative Centre  .  Stöðvarfjörður, Iceland  .  August
2017   Chulitna Lodge Artist-In-Residence Program  .  Lake Clark National Park & Preserve, Alaska  .  June – July
2010   Vermont Studio Center  .  Johnson, VT  .  May – June

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CURATORIAL

de stijl | PODIUM FOR ART  .  Austin, TX
Co-Curated with Christina Coleman & Marja Spearman unless otherwise noted  .  Exhibition History

2017   En Bola  .  Artists & Curatorial Collective, Los OutsidersMichael Anthony Garciá with Lisette Chavez, Roberto Jackson Harrington with Jean-Sebastien Boncy, Hector Hernandez with Mauro C. Martinez
2017    Place to Place  .  Artist Larry Graeber
2016   Before I Knew You, I Missed You  .  Artist Tammie Rubin  .  Curator
2016   One / Sixth  .  Artists Walter Kisner, Steven Jones, Zoë Charlton, Robert PruittChristina Coleman, Janaye Brown

. . .

2017   Austin Critics Table Awards Nominations
Won Best Solo Gallery Exhibition  .  Tammie Rubin: Before I Knew You, I Missed You
Nominated for Best Group Gallery Exhibition  .  One / Sixth

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BIOGRAPHY


BIOGRAPHY


 

Dameon Lester received his BFA from Virginia Commonwealth University, in sculpture, where he studied abroad at Loughborough College of Art and Design in the UK and Technikon Natal in South Africa. He received his MFA from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, engaging with many internationally recognized artists and critics as visiting faculty. He later attended California State University, Los Angeles, for his teaching credential and to pursue his MA in Special Education.

Lester continues an active art practice, having received numerous grants, recognitions, and opportunities for more than a decade. He draws insight and perspective from many facets of life—including his past work with special-needs children and adults, and highly gifted art students at Otis College of Art and Design. 
    
Since his relocation to Austin, Texas, Lester has been establishing a new home-based studio and developing new work.