October 21 - November 18, 2023
From Front Gallery:
“Jason Villegas returns to Houston with his solo exhibition at Front Gallery. His work expresses his queer identity, and life journey through what he describes as a “strangely beautiful and frightening world.” The exhibition title “Don’t Stop Me Now” refers to the sense of perseverance he feels living within a community that is the target of so much hate. Although he lives in what he calls a “gay bubble” in San Francisco, Villegas is all too familiar with the discomfort that exists in less accepting environments. He makes this work because it has never been more important to speak boldly about this reality, and he does so with honesty, humility and humor.
During lockdown in 2020 New York Villegas began experimenting with gender bending by donning his own fabric artworks. Inspired by drag, he put on wigs made from clothing fragments, and fingernails made from leather scraps. He then privately photographed himself without intending the results to have an audience. He later repurposed the outfits to make “Take it Easy” which is the centerpiece sculpture of this exhibition—a figure that might be sprouting or decaying. It is vibrant and colorful, yet slightly disturbing and enigmatic. It is not quite human, not quite animal, and neither male nor female. Villegas says “it is a piece that reflects my current relaxed attitude about my identity. I no longer grapple with who I am, I just exist, not too concerned with what I am or why I am.””
Reception: October 21, 2023 | 6–8 pm
1412 Bonnie Brae
Houston, 77006 TX