Today we’d like to introduce you to Jared Hendler.
Jared, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
My portraiture celebrates those influencing our society through online culture. Drawing & painting throughout childhood, I emigrated to the United States from South Africa receiving my BFA from the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California.
Following my education, I moved to New York and worked within the advertising industry on digital and social media campaigns for large, multi-national brands. I witnessed the seismic effects of technology and the unprecedented power and opportunity it gave individuals to reach large audiences directly — many communities who were previously unrecognized or misrepresented now had a voice.
Working with online influencers lead me to portray the online personalities shaping our culture. I have been living in LA for almost five years now. Leaving NY enabled me to set up a lifestyle that primarily allows me to focus on my art.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Living as an artist is always a challenge especially if you do not come from the art world establishment. It is no secret about what a closed world it is. That being said, the most vibrant points of our culture always come from the fringes and the democratization of media (part of my subject matter), enables artists of all kinds to reach a wider audience directly – without industry validation.
There are many challenges. Believing in yourself. Staying motivated. Discipline of getting to the work itself. Objectivity. Focus, when so many other things need to get done… not to mention trying to make a living. My work is figurative when the art world has been so focused on abstract works for decades. But that is changing. You could see that in the market over the last five years.
The Obama portraits by Kehinde Wiley and Amy Sherald helped to punctuate the importance of figurative work and how they have played a part in documenting our history.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Oil and Charcoal – what should we know?
I am a figurative painter who’s portraiture celebrates those influencing our society through online culture. As an artist, I sell original works, prints and I have a T-shirt line with bold, graphic versions of my portraits – people love them.
I am most proud that my work represents individuals & communities previously misrepresented and misunderstood that now have a direct and powerful voice to effect positive change.
We live in an incredible time. The democratization of media has enabled anyone to broadcast and connect directly with likeminded individuals and communities that are most meaningful to them. My work documents the effects that technology and social media culture have on our society.
I am fascinated by our need and obsession with creating our own identities; banal, creative or just plain ludicrous from individuals simply seeking connection – to others with wider ambitions who make a living by growing audiences that eclipse those associated with traditional celebrity.
While some are driven by pure narcissism, the underlying human need to connect with others on some intimate level is the most interesting as it requires us to publicly expose a part of ourselves not often seen.
The public creation of personal identity, combined with the emergence of a ‘new’ celebrity for a new era is what I bring to life in my work. In homage of traditional portraiture as a representation of our times, my work is a reflection of who we are now.
Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
As an artist, I work solo, but I am forever grateful to those who provide opportunities to exhibit along with the patrons who support my work.
Of course, I am incredibly grateful for my subjects who inspire me daily. I can only hope that the work that I do helps to elevate their personal goals and supports their communities in a positive way.
- Website: https://www.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: https://www.
- Facebook: https://business.
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/
- Merchandise Store: https://store.