Since the mid-1990s, Northfield, Minnesota artist Jill Ewald has explored how to visualize interior and exterior human connections though painting and drawing. Stylistically, Ewald’s work is as abstract as the concepts addressed by her work. Often using a square format support, whether it is paper, canvas or board, Ewald works with oil paint, graphite, conte crayon, encaustic and charcoal, and recently, thread.
Ewald cites as an art historical influence the still life genre, as practiced by Cezanne or Morandi who investigated the essence of objects through spatial constructs and shifting perspective. She also notes German Expressionism and Romanticism as stylistic influences in terms of color, abstraction and psychological depth, and such artists as Howard Hodgkin, Frank Auerbach and Peter Lanyon.
Ewald received a M.F.A. in visual arts from The Vermont College, Montpelier, Vermont, and a B.A. from St. Olaf College, Northfield, Minnesota. She was an art apprentice at St. Olaf for the year following graduation. From 1998 through 2013, she served as director of the Flaten Art Museum at St. Olaf College, where she has also taught visual art classes. She served on the artist panel of the Minnesota Artist Exhibition Program at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. She has received awards from shows and grants from the Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council and the State Arts Board. Her work has been exhibited frequently in the Midwest at venues such as the Rochester Art Center, Rochester, MN, Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Circa Gallery, Minneapolis, the Duluth Art Institute, Duluth, MN, and the Plains Arts Museum, Fargo, North Dakota. Her work was also included in the American Drawing Biennial at the Muscarelle Museum of Art in Williamsburg, VA, and the Westmorland Art Nationals, a juried exhibition in Youngblood, PA. Ewald’s work is also found in several public and private collections.