Jim Isermann: Works 1980–2020
text by Christopher Knight
A comprehensive monograph spanning the 40-year career of Palm Springs–based artist Jim Isermann (born 1955), this title shows the artist’s first 20 years of extensive, chronological research of postwar art and design filtered through popular culture and consumerism, followed by 20 years of site-specific public projects and a studio practice of labor-intensive painting, sculpture and the occasional product design project.
In 1980, there were no guidebooks to California design or what we now call Midcentury Modern. Isermann constructed his own timeline, object by object, from thrift stores, flea markets and swap meets, making bodies of work that included latch hook rugs paired with painting, stained glass window panels and handsewn fabric wall hangings. By 1999, Isermann had his first computer, and so began the second 20 years of his career, with complex digitally designed patterns that found their form in commercially manufactured modules. Isermann continues to be inspired by the unpredictable, serendipitous moments that breathe life into his work.