Justin Chance (b. 1993) is an artist and writer sometimes based in Chicago and New York. He holds a BFA in Fiber & Material Studies and a BA in Visual and Critical Studies from the School of Art Institute of Chicago. In 2016, Justin will travel on a grant to Trinidad & Tobago to research topics of landscapes, science fiction, paradise and migration generally exploring the notion of “exile” and retroactive black West-Indian diaspora. He is currently working on a collection of essays as well as a travel manual (soon to be available by .pdf) entitled The Places People Go and the People Who Chase Them There. Grants/Awards include a World Less Traveled Grant, Edward Ryerson Fellowship, George Roeder Visual Critical Studies Award,Presidential Scholarship, all from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and an Ox-Bow School of Art Merit Scholarship. He has exhibited his work in Chicago and Brooklyn.

View more work at: justinchance.com


Although I don’t believe in thesis statements in art, I think a lot about the act of seeing and aesthetics. For me in abstraction, I think about everything coming from something and then transforming. In that way, I am dedicated to the notions of the monstrous or rather, the aberration: something that isn’t quite what typically previously was….hence the Basketball Court or the Map, featured above. Familiar things made a little unfamiliar. Sometimes I am interested in the likeness of thing. I work in fits and starts: with bursts of ideas or actions or titles trickling into one another or fading away and then hopefully becoming real again. Besides monsters, I think about storms, earthquakes, space travel, overgrowth, deep time and science fiction as tools for discussing the post-colonial condition (which can be explored as an abstract gesture itself). But these are just thoughts and not the work. The “quilts” or wool and silk pieces come out of a way of thinking about painting and form and sculpture. The forms come out of references to other forms. The puzzles and .pdf files come out of language. I want to make paintings, I want to make objects. I think about the wall and the floor, the doorway (window) and the page.