Jesse Asslemann at Pilotenkueche International Art Program, photo by Emma Arrivati

Jesse Asselman: parallel realities

As a child, Jesse Asselman has filled his life with fantasies of creatures and imaginary space. To him, it felt like they were alive. Later, being used to existing in these parallel realities, it was very natural to begin playing this colorful game with others. Jesse strongly believes that art is created in the mind of the spectator in collaboration with the artist. One does not exist without another. He creates spaces that could be both 2D and 3D. They beckon you to enter. His higher goal is to make people feel connected to their inner self, the environment or to each other. This is accomplished by using Jesse’s work as a checkpoint for shared coordinates of multiple participants. 

Between both Jesse worlds

Most spaces created by Jesse are meant to be interactive. When he does a performance there is definitely engagement of the people that are watching, that is how it comes to life. When he makes a painting, he likes to see other people looking at it, as it would not exist otherwise. This way the canvas plays a role of projection for the other person’s inner world. You need both the inside and the outside world. Jesse is constantly searching the area in between. 

images by PILOTENKUECHE or supplied by artist

Jesse’s process of creating art does not only depend on his studio hours. The most important method for him is to constantly stay extra aware of his surroundings and be open to encountering things that trigger something. There are levels to producing each piece. At the early stage it is most important to keep a heightened level of awareness, to let the information flow freely. For example, in case Jesse sees a beautiful flower and feels like he must include it. 

Colors have special meanings to Jesse, especially when they are mixed and hard to define. However in his drawing he prefers to use black and write, so he uses charcoal. For a long time, a recurring image of red castle appeared in this paintings. Red has always symbolized that that place is alive. 

Heightened awareness

His last series of drawings, inspired by architectural motives, come from a large collection of found photographs, places Jesse saw, scenes from films, and images cut out of old magazines. These drawings capture artist’s obsessions with peculiar landscapes, and undefined places. 

To create an immersive space where one feels trapped is a type of colorful black hole experience. To play this game is one way to disconnect from this world.

written by Daria Kovaleva

You can find the latest on what Jesse is doing on his website, instagram or as one of our International Residents at our upcoming exhibitions.

Deeply Pelusa Life

Sat 20 Aug 7PM

Performance 8PM

Mon  22 – Thur 25 Aug

Alte Handelsschule
Giesserstr 75

Dreamy Cube Curve

Sat 17 Sept 7PM

Performance 8PM
I am where you are

18, 20, 21 Sept

Franz-Flemming-Str 9