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The Healing Arts: Joel Hoyer

for Veterans and the Public

Joel Hoyer

Joel Hoyer

"I have been doing art of some sort most of my life. This kind of follow-through is a new adventure for me. It began rather innocently when I started playing with some digital photographs on my computer. The process reminded me of playing with crayons or finger paints as a child. I was having fun, and I got lost in the process. Inevitably, there would come a point where I would like what had become of the image I started with, and I would stop working on it and save it.

Joel Hoyer says, "The relationship between materials, process, and ideas has fascinated me since age 14 when I began making my own paints out of plan materials, dry pigments with various binders. My first canvases included the walls of our basement at home where I imitated cave painters by using animal fat and dry pigment to create images. One of my paintings from those early days is still in my collection."

Slide 1.

In 1966 I studied methods and materials at the San Francisco Academy of Art where I discovered egg tempura and gilding. These have become my principal media to the present day.

Since 1972, artist Joel Hoyer has also focused much of his artistic vision on the creation of contemporary ritual objects, similar to West African Kota reliquary art. For several years he has been creating other types of receptacles in which objects of particular significance to him or his friends are sealed, literally, and ritually "enshrined" for posterity. For him, it is a "letting go of the past." The Infectious Diseases Clinic was honored to receive one of his reliquary pieces commemorating the conclusion of the first of its drug trials to treat AIDS.

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