Jason Pickleman: Making Time for Joy

Friday, May 19 – Aug 31, 2023

723 S 5th St Milwaukee, WI 53204

Jason Pickleman: Making Time for Joy

On view 19 May 2023—31 August 2023 

Opening Reception to be held in June 2023 


723 S. 5th Street | Milwaukee, WI

Jason Pickleman’s practice as a painter spans decades. It is rooted deeply in traditions of abstraction, the manipulation of language, and his beginnings as a part of the Post-Conceptualist movement in Chicago in the 1980’s and 1990’s. Pickleman’s paintings are always subtly wry, slightly sexy, and quietly human.

His latest body of work, on view in Making Time for Joy, are a suite of new paintings derived from manipulations of various iterations of the logo belonging to the once-ubiquitous dishwashing detergent brand Joy. These works, which are at once stark and measured, playful and (as advertised) joyful, are Pickleman at his best. With an authoritative eye, he excavates the intersection of art and graphic design, and in doing so uncovers questions of purpose, domesticity, and the most interior aspects of personhood. These paintings ask their viewers to take stock. Encourage them to start again. Impel them to make time for joy.

Pickleman’s command of the source material comes as no surprise. Of the delineation between the twin practices of art and design, Pickleman says:

“I’d like to think there’s not a lot of difference between what I do at my desk at 9am and what I do in my studio at 9pm. It’s not like one thing switches off and another switches on. In my mind, it's the same process.”

With this body of work, Pickleman makes a compelling case for the arc of his own career; for finding and seizing on the pleasures of our daily labors, and for being more consciously intentional about the joy we take in our lives.


Jason Pickleman is an artist, gallerist, collector, and designer, known for producing graphic material for a wide-ranging cultural clientele through his studio JNL, for his five-year run as the proprietor of the collection gallery Lawrence & Clark, and for the exhibitions he curates at the art dealers’ cooperative Paris London Hong Kong.


The Suburban is a project space run by Michelle Grabner and Brad Killam, that honors the tradition of artist directed programs. Founded in Oak Park, IL in 1999, the gallery relocated to Milwaukee, WI in September 2015, where it continues to exhibit a wide array of contemporary artists.