Wk 4- Artist Conversation- Samuel Jernigan

About the Artist

This week’s artist is Samuel Jernigan. Jernigan is originally from Central California, and he grew up in an agricultural area. Today, Jernigan is a sculptor at CSULB, and he graduated from CSULB last semester. Jernigan enjoys to read, watch cartoons, and go on bicycle rides during his spare time. Jernigan tends to spend plenty of time making his art. His art can take up to 16 hours to complete. There was even a time when Jernigan abandoned his apartment and lived in his car. He stated that the he did that because he was never really home due to his art.

Formal Analysis

There were plenty of sculptures in the Gallery that were made by Jernigan. In fact, I believe that all the sculptures in this gallery were made by him. These sets of sculptures were named “Weight of Whimsy Ideal”. While none of the sculptures were identical, they all had similar characteristics. For example, most of his sculptures have to do with childhood. Jernigan likes to make colorful sculptures in order to remind people of their childhood. He also likes to make his sculptures resemble caricatures, since he does not incorporate plenty of details in his art. This can be seen in the the sculpture of the females head shown above.In this sculpture, there is not many facial characteristics on her and her head is disproportional like a cartoon.

Content Analysis

As previously mentioned, Jernigan’s art deals with childhood. Jernigan likes to work with abandoned toys because they remind him of his childhood. He stated that he wants his art to make people think of not only their own childhood, but of how they felt when they were young. However, Jernigan also wants the viewer to be surprised by what he uses to create his art. For example, by using abandoned toys to make his art, people are able to see the toys in a different way. Not only do the toys and caricature nature of his art revoke memories of childhood, they also simultaneously remind people of abandonment and fitting in. That is because the toys are usually thrown away toys, but when Jernigan collects these toys they have a new purpose. The resulting sculptures are able to capture both worlds, and shows them to the world.


Overall, I enjoyed looking at Jernigan’s art. His art reminded me of my own childhood because of the toys he used. His art was very diverse, yet they all felt like they belonged in the same “family”. It was really cool to see this because it shows how something as simple as toys can evoke so many different emotions. It also made me wonder what had happened to all the toys that I used to have when I was a child. In a way, I was able to relate to the art because I had plenty of toys that were thrown away. This was the first time that I had thought about that. However, after seeing how Jernigan used abandoned toys to create art, I wonder if my abandoned toys would have a new purpose someday, or if they already have one today.


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