New York native Jean Grosser received a BA in History from Barnard College, a BFA in sculpture from Alfred State College of Ceramics and an MFA in sculpture from Ohio University, Athens.
She currently resides in Hartsville, South Carolina where she is Professor of Art at Coker University. Her work is in the collections of the Freedom Rides Museum and the Civil Rights Memorial in Montgomery, AL. She has been the recipient of the Individual Artist’s Fellowship from the South Carolina Arts Commission and was a finalist for the Southern Arts Federation/National Endowment for the Arts Regional Fellowships in Sculpture. Her work, inspired by her interest in political activism, has been exhibited internationally.
Since 1993, I have been creating sculptures inspired by political events. My artistic interests stem from a family tradition of political activism. My grandfather was a conscientious objector during World War I. His experiences in military prisons (Alcatraz and Leavenworth) between 1918 and 1921 have been the subject of my artwork in the past.
In 2006 I responded to a call for entries from the Holter Museum in Helena, Montana. The museum offered neo-Nazi hate books to artists who would use them to transform their message of hate. My initial series, included in the exhibition Speaking Volumes: Transforming Hate at the Holter Museum was a series of eight artworks based on my Jewish heritage. I used the torn singed pages of the hate books as a backdrop for small sculptures that included photos of my aunts, uncles and great grandparents, four of whom emigrated to the US before WWII and four of whom did not survive.
I continued to use neo-Nazi hate books to create additional works about ethnic and racial hatred. These were large-scale drawings (75” x 50”) entitled Fragments of Hate depicting crumpled pages from the book The White Man’s Bible.
My most recent research has focused on the proliferation of guns in the United States, resulting in a series of sculptures and drawings that address our reverence for firearms and the toll they take on society.