2004 - HIP POP ART
Hip Pop Art is a movement spearheaded by R. Jackson in 2004 to document the transition of Hip hop from a sub culture to a pop culture.
The aim is to develop a catalogue of images in order to preserve the culture. “As hip hop matures the awareness of the roots of hip hop is falling into obscurity.” Says Jackson. This is why he has set out to create distinct imagery of the innovators and contributors of hip hop to serve as a physical record.
His aesthetic approach to his paintings is not very painterly at all. Instead he chooses to divide the subject into shapes creating a vivid illusion of depth with flat color. Elisa Turner a correspondent for ART news says” ...Of special note are Rodney Jackson’s acrylic paintings on wood panel of late pop musicians, like rapper Lisa Left Eye” Lopes and Aaliyah, admired for her mix of hip hop and R&B. He memorializes them by painting portraits in sharp colors, isolating flattened shades with the clarity of computer graphics or color by numbers kits, paradoxically giving his subjects a vivid three-dimensional presence.”
“ I want people to struggle to figure out whether my work is hand-painted digitally printed. I do what the photo realists did to photography except I do it to digital media. I guess I’m a “digi-realist.” Says Jackson when asked about his style of painting. "My aesthetic approach to painting is what I call "Digirealism." Digirealism is the creating of works that appear to be digitally or mechanically produced. After mapping out a conceptual direction and selecting iconography that speaks to me, I begin my process by collecting visual information and simplifying it with a mechanical approach. I begin painting with flat solid acrylic colors, with out stencils or masking. I do this in a very ridged way as to remove evidence of the human hand so that my images appear to be printed or digitally produced. This approach, for me, invigorates, elevates and adds an intangible value to the underlying conceptual threads embedded in work. I feel my process achieves this by employing techniques that simultaneously exhaust and emphasize the forth dimension of time."