Statement / Bio
Jared Christopher Kelley is an artist drawing connections between digital simulations and their physical extensions. As a child in a fundamentalist millenarian family, he was taught to believe he would live forever after the apocalypse. He has attempted to place the contradiction of his queer identity and the residue of these formative beliefs into secular historic and contemporary transhumanist movements, using these as a means to sit with the unrealizable expectation of immortality. Utilizing the desire, mechanisms, and far reaching implications of achieving immortality and physical transcendence through exponential advances in biotechnology and digital simulation, he creates works that connect, conduct, tunnel, and bridge the space between virtual and physical worlds. His narrative and poetic work contemplates this restless “space between'' as a psychological membrane used to transit freely between the virtual and physical.
Kelley received his BA in Interdisciplinary Education in the Arts and his MFA with a concentration in New Media, both from the University of Illinois at Chicago. He has performed and exhibited work in DIY spaces, small, medium, and large galleries, and regional museums in Atlanta and Chicago, including the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia, Roman Susan, and Gallery 400, and internationally in Australia and South Korea, including CICA Museum Gimpo. He has most recently been included as a resident in the 2021 cohort of the Immensiva VR/AI Festival organized by the Espronceda Institute of Art & Culture in Barcelona and was selected for inclusion in the Ars Electronica Festival for 2021.