April 7th - April 28th
Jirsa’s work explores themes of isolation, self-medication, and depression, ultimately offering a perspective of Tourette's Syndrome (TS) through a facade of perceived reality. Living with TS involves chronic pain, and at times, being unable to function due to extreme ticking, leaving a TS sufferer to feel like a prisoner in his or her own body. Consequently, the emotional states necessary to navigate TS are, at the very least, complex.
Through his work, Jirsa's goal is to explore the psychological space that is integral to the experience of TS itself within the internal and external environment of a TS sufferer's being. Many of the paintings have been created during TS episodes and these episodes have become part of the process. The pain TS sufferers experience is usually suppressed and hidden. TS sufferers cannot necessarily control tics, but at times can fight to suppress them in order to hide what is truly happening until they physically can no longer suppress tics and have to release everything that has been boiling underneath the surface. The surface of the paintings becomes a facade and a stand in for the body, creating an externalization of a TS sufferer's psychological space and mental process. The work explores the dichotomy between facing inward aspects of the self that may be too hard to deal with while simultaneously keeping and maintaining outward composure.