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Grear Patterson

American  •  b. 1988


New York-based Grear Patterson uses mixed media to represent locations and moments that are ideal or associated with strong positive emotion. To do so, he plays with a visual repertoire of images that echo loudly in contemporary society; the resulting works challenge the ways in which we read and receive information in daily life.

As such, in a show entitled True Romance that referenced Tony Scott's 1993 crime film, Patterson produced work that broke down smooth spaces and understandable tropes like sunsets and faces. The artist continually plays with viewers' nostalgic tendencies, but he also cheekily appropriates the contemporary vernacular and places it in a different, more aesthetic setting outside of the screen.


  • Patterson's most recognizable motif is his signature play on a smiling or frowning emoticon.

"I like the simplicity of naiveté as an idea, and the clarity it brings."

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