Jessica Oler is a Sociologist and Conceptual Artist who lives and works in Davis, California. She earned her Masters in Fine Arts from California College of the Arts in 2019. She has also earned her Bachelor's degree in Sociology from San Francisco State University and three Associate’s degrees in Liberal Arts, Social Science, and Sociology. Through photography, collage, and large installation her practice centers around displacement, histories, and Black geographies.
Her MFA Thesis Award Winning “Acclimatization: Unprotected Black Female Flesh” continues to be a platform for the formulation of her artistic and research endeavors. By viewing the body as a landscape that tracks and catalogs histories, she is guided by the girth of her relationship with her body post diagnosis of multiple sclerosis; landscape; time; geography; and site.
She researches personal narratives, and intertwines her personal narrative with socio political readings surrounding race, and the geographic associations black women have to the land, specifically the United States and the Diaspora. The intimacy of violence and trauma are interwoven with abstraction, movement, adjacency, and context. Oler utilizes light, color, and gestures as they relate to socio-political forces that reflect the relationship between geography, space, and the black female body. Variations of color, dimensionality, and layers open the door to unique, interrelated dynamics that disallow separation.
She actively supports and participates in advocacy work through the National Multiple Sclerosis Society since her diagnosis of multiple sclerosis in 2012. She is also a member of the Association of Black Sociologists.
Her work has been shown at California College of the Arts, Chautauqua and Brooklyn New York, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Miami, Florida, Alameda, Oakland, and San Francisco, California, and Alexandria, New South Wales, Australia.
CV available upon request.