Jordan Ann Craig (b. 1992 San Jose, CA, USA) received her BA in Studio Art and Psychology from Dartmouth College in 2015. She lives and works in Santa Fe County, New Mexico.
Known for her large-scale paintings and prints, Craig's abstract compositions are characterized by a dynamic exploration and interpretation of Northern Cheyenne material culture. Incorporating vivid colors, recurring patterns, and interwoven forms situated in grids, Craig's work explores and celebrates her Native ancestry, posing questions about the languages of modern abstract painting and the relationship to both historic and contemporary Indigenous culture.
Craig's research-based practice begins in museum collections and archives, where she spends time meticulously studying Indigenous material culture. Her pictorial vocabulary is drawn specifically from Cheyenne beadwork, drawings and textiles. Through the process of constructing her compositions, Craig meditates on the personal and collective significance of these designs. By making paintings on canvas, Craig questions how we consider the history, context and influence of these abstract vocabularies.
Resolutely geometric paintings are made up of repeated triangles, squares, rectangles and stripes - symbolic of Northern Cheyenne design. Utilizing the traditional horizontal composition, Craig's intricate compositions have an underlying, unifying symmetry creating a balanced field of perception. Her exacting application of paint honors the past - a homage to the rigorous perfection and craftsmanship of the original design.
In contrast to geometric works, another key strand of Craig's practice is her 'dot drawings' - a parallel mode of making influenced by landscape and Aboriginal painting, allowing for organic expression. Made up of countless dots in relief, these oil paintings hold a rhythmic repetition, one not confined to linear structure, but instead speaking to the undulation of topographic forms. Subtle and quiet in palette and tone, these abstractions meditate on the American landscape, namely the land surrounding her New Mexico studio, and converse with a lineage of 20th century artists who worked there.
Poetic, conversational, emotive and sometimes humorous, Craig's titles offer a snippet into her personal world - weaving memory and life experience with illusory narrative. In transcendental investigations, she creates new narratives whilst celebrating and expanding the legacies of Native American art making.
Craig has had solo exhibitions at Roswell Museum and Art Center, NM; School for Advanced Research, Santa Fe, NM; The Guesthouse, Cork, Ireland; Scuola Internazionale di Grafica Venezia, Italy; Nearburg Gallery, Black Family Visual Arts Center, Hanover, NH; October Gallery, London, UK; and Barrows Rotunda, Dartmouth College, NH. Craig has been included in numerous group shows including The Center for Contemporary Arts, Santa Fe, NM; Trout Museum of Art, WI; Berkeley Arts Center, CA; Rainmaker Gallery, Bristol, UK; October Gallery, London, UK; Santa Fe Community Convention Center, NM; El Museo Cultural de Santa Fe, NM; Fort Worth Community Arts Center, TX; Jaffe-Friede Gallery, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH; Seven Stars Art Center, Sharon, VT; Black Family Visual Arts Center, Hanover, NH.
Selected collections include Anderson Museum of Contemporary Art, Roswell, NM; IAIA Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, Santa Fe, NM; Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Overland Park, KS; Kala Art Institute, Berkeley, CA; School for Advanced Research, Santa Fe, NM; A LAB, Amsterdam, Netherlands; Cork Printmakers, Ireland; Tia Collection, Santa Fe, NM and Forge Collection, Taghkanic, NY.
Craig has participated in numerous artist residency programmes nationally and internationally, including the Native American Artist Residency, School for Advanced Research, Santa Fe, NM; the Roswell Artist-in-Residence (RAiR Foundation) fellowship, NM; the Ucross Foundation, Clearmont, Wyoming; Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) Artist Residency, Santa Fe, NM; East London Printmakers Project Keyholder Residency, London, UK; Cork Printmakers International Visiting Artist Residency, Cork City, Ireland; and Scuola Internazionale di Grafica Venezia, Italy among others.