Jenny Eggleston

Exhibit Description
In response to the resurgence of American fascism, Eggleston presents Unstable. Having watched our democratic experiment pushed to the brink, culminating in the January 6, 2021 insurrection, many have felt unmoored. A troubling onset of chaos has disrupted the comfort they once took in whatever version of American democracy they believed in. For Eggleston, this has taken the form of a stampede of sorts, horses escaping their paddock, breaking free, for better or for worse, from the carousel.

In the grotesque, cartoonish mode of Phillip Guston, Eggleston recalls the iconic horse imagery of Henry Fuseli and Susan Rothenberg to document the crimes against, and of, our democracy and its mythology. We see horses as beasts of burden; we see broken, mangled horses; we see defeated horses as representative of the Democratic Party’s donkey; we see horses as unicorns, looking foolish and ashamed in the face of the naive hope and imagination that conjured them.

These horses preside over a variety of issues—systemic racism and homophobia, gun violence, capitalism, book banning, and toxic masculinity, to name a few. In the face of these issues, the horses are overwhelmed, exhausted, and defeated, often issuing not-quite-therapeutic, never-ending primal screams recalling those depicted in the work of Francis Bacon.

These horses are lost without their domestic comforts, frantic and desperate. They mirror our own anxiety as we watch our country re-expose itself, noble only in its mission and vision statements, continuing to be built on the backs of marginalized communities who benefit least from the rights, protections, and benefits we espouse. 
Artist Biography
Jenny Eggleston is a Raleigh-based artist raised in Richmond, Virginia. Born into a family of historians, she was immersed in southern, patriotic rhetoric and grew up with a deep love of southern culture, food, and art. Her work is a reckoning with this whitewashed, patriarchal upbringing. Eggleston graduated from the College of William and Mary and began graduate studies at Virginia Commonwealth University before moving to Seattle and then to Raleigh.

Eggleston has exhibited throughout North Carolina and Virginia at the Weatherspoon Art Museum in Greensboro, the Muscarelle Museum of Art in Williamsburg, and the Rubenstein Arts Center at Duke University, among others. She is the owner of Egg in Nest Art Studio, a private art studio providing instruction in drawing, painting, and art appreciation. Her husband is a marine scientist at NC State and they have three grown children. 


Artist Name(s): Jenny Eggleston
Exhibit Name: Unstable
Gallery Location: CAM Little Media Gallery
Current Status: Past