Wesley Kimler

Wesley Kimler (b. 1953) is an American artist based in Chicago known for his colossal paintings, up to 15 feet high and 27 feet wide. According to critic Kevin Nance, he paints ‘expressive, gestural, hybrid paintings that combine abstract and figurative elements in a way that’s theatrical and beautiful, sometimes grotesque and surreal, and always powerfully evocative.’

Kimler has given outspoken interviews in which he champions painting, attacks what he views as the Neo-Conceptual academy and the artworld hierarchy, advocating independence and self-reliance on the part of creators. He is also known in the contemporary Chicago artworld for his work rallying for a new art scene. Nicknamed ‘the Shark’ due to his fierceness in discussions, he organized a website and e-zine Sharkforum with fellow artist David Roth, which includes such well-known figures as Museum of Contemporary Art curator Lynne Warren, photographer and film critic Ray Pride and artist and theorist Mark Staff Brandl. The artists active on his site also exhibit together under the name the Sharkpack.

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