Cleon Peterson is an LA-based artist whose chaotic and violent paintings show clashing figures symbolizing a struggle between power and submission in the fluctuating architecture of contemporary society.
In Cleon Peterson’s anxiety-riddled world, violence is the status quo. His dystopian scenes evoke Thomas Hobbes’ description of life as a war between individuals: “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.” Many of Peterson’s paintings feature images of hostility removed from any scenery that might bring reason to bear a sense of justness to the brutality; the only context given is the mélange of evisceration coating the floor. In other works, the setting is a cityscape where storefronts only serve to indulge the base narcissism and vice taking place on the streets.
He was born in Seattle and received his MFA from the Cranbrook Academy of Art in Detroit, MI, and a BFA in Graphic Design at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena.