Kellys says that he thinks of his collage form as similar to dj’s process of sampling parts of music and bits of sound to create a new song. The natural and urban worlds fuse, and time starts to overlap as images from different eras co-exist and create new meaning in the juxtaposition of elements. A classic American car may park next to sheet music, chicadees, and mid-century motel signage, while in another piece vintage Vogue models may be paired with aspen trees, and found love letters all under a silky gloss of resin. “I chose to paint with paper and various printed materials in order to achieve a unique depth to my work. By allowing the viewer to first see a complete, near photorealistic image from a distance, then at a closer look to explore the many individual textures and bits of text, I am able to add layers of meaning to each piece. I love the effect that thousands of little bits of paper, all taken out of context, come together to create something new. I feel art should inspire, transport and hopefully awe the viewer, that is certainly my intention with this series of collage.” A Northern California native, Jay Kelly settled in Venice, California after graduating from UCLA. He began his career in graphic design, yet quickly emerged as a notable fine artist with his unique figurative collages created from books, photos and magazines.
Kelly has attracted the attention of collectors worldwide with solo exhibitions in Los Angeles, New York, Aspen, Park City and Miami, and is represented by galleries in Los Angeles, Boston, Maui, Mill Valley (San Francisco), Park City, Seattle, Whistler, B.C. and throughout Germany. His work has been featured in television shows and feature films, including the cult classic Donnie Darko, as well as in hotels, restaurants and bars in Los Angeles, Chicago and New York. In addition to his exhibitions, Kelly creates a steady stream of commissioned work for private and corporate clients.