Drawn into Something: Retrospective exhibition of Jacksonville artist Jeff Whipple

Posted by Kevin Calloway on

copyright Jeff Whipple

Touché Gallery’s first solo exhibition is a retrospective of the career of Jeff Whipple. There will be selections of Whipple’s earliest art in the 1970s up to works made in 2022. Whipple’s drawings, paintings and sculpture feature photorealistic imagery on abstract backgrounds. His art has a three-line motif that makes the thousands of artworks he’s created since 1980 highly recognizable. With 84 solo exhibitions including four museum shows, hundreds of group shows, dozens of awards in art competitions, dozens of major artist grants, Whipple is the most accomplished artist in Jacksonville history.

The exhibit coincides with the publication of Whipple’s new memoir, “Drawn into Something”, which is about his art experiences from childhood through college. The memoir shows the passion of a young artist who strives to develop the highest art skills to express poetic and philosophical themes. 

This exhibit also celebrates the 20th anniversary of Whipple’s 25-year retrospective at the Gulf Coast Museum of Art, which traveled to Orlando and Naples. The new retrospective will feature several of that exhibit’s artworks along with others that have never been exhibited anywhere.

And, this is also the 10th anniversary of Jeff Whipple moving his studio to Jacksonville in 2012. That year he was the featured artist at the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville Art Awards. 

Whipple won the prestigious Florida Individual Artist Fellowship four times. The highly competitive state funded grant was selected by museum directors, curators, and arts professionals. He won the same type of grant in Illinois two times. He won the Art Ventures Award from the Community Foundation of NE Florida in 2017 and 2021. In 2018, he won a $25,000 artist grant from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation.

Whipple is also a playwright with 22 play productions since 1980. He’s won several playwriting awards including five Florida statewide playwriting competitions.

He’s had two dozen public art commissions and last year he installed five sculptures for the City of St. Petersburg, Florida. Whipple’s paintings for a New Orleans library were selected as one of the 50 best public art projects in 2012 by the Public Art Network. His other public art commissions include an 80-foot-long video projection on the exterior of the Tampa Museum of Art, and a 300-foot-long translucent lighted mural for the City of Tampa. The Tampa Museum of Art commissioned Whipple to create a large-scale outdoor video and art installation in Miami Beach that was seen by hundreds of thousands during the week of Art Basel Miami in 2006.

Jeff Whipple has a large warehouse studio near the CoRK Arts District in Riverside.