John Wilton: Modular Art Panels (MAPs)
Slick Family Stairway to the Stars
Opened January 12, 2024
This body of work, which Wilton describes as Neo Pop, is a cacophony of color, iconography, and messages within messages. The work often jars the senses, and its multiple meanings can be interpreted and reinterpreted again and again.
“My initial influences came from American Pop Art, particularly the appropriated and serially repeated images from popular culture. I take those banal, commercial sources and use digital technologies and traditional painterly techniques to transform them into something resembling high art. Consequently, my process mixes several mediums, as well as stylistic conventions, even within a single work. In addition to painterly handling, there are machine-generated patterns, apparent repetitions, and abstract forms in combination with sleek photographic stereotypes. This free-association collage of anonymous digital precision and hand-crafted, painterly expressiveness underscores the abrupt shifts of context evident in most contemporary art, to say nothing of those we encounter in our own lives.”
About the Artist
As a mixed media artist, John Wilton has participated in over 100 group and 40 solo shows, winning a number of awards along the way. Wilton maintains a studio in DeLand and has served as a judge for more than 80 art shows throughout Florida. In 1995, he was awarded an Individual Artist's Fellowship from the state of Florida.
Formerly a senior professor and chair of the Visual Arts Department at Daytona State College, Wilton has a degree in design from Florida State University and has done graduate work in printmaking, visual communication and education. Teaching assignments included digital media and video production classes. He has taught digital media classes at Stetson University and Embry Riddle Aeronautical University as well. Along with curating several exhibitions around central Florida, Dr. Wilton has published various art education essays and a dissertation on desktop video art.
Wilton has completed a number of public art commissions for Volusia County and the State of Florida over the years, including the Volusia County Justice Center in DeLand, the Marine Science Center in Ponce Inlet, the pedestrian crossover at Ocean Walk in Daytona Beach, the Lifeguard Headquarters in South Daytona and a collaborative sculpture project for DeLand City Hall.
Current projects include the DeLand Sculpture Walk (since 2010); the DeLand Utility Box Art Wrap Project; the annual Off the Beaten Path Studio Tours; a utility box art wrap project at One Daytona and development of ACED - the arts, culture and entertainment district for the City of DeLand.