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inside the academy

feature collection

Opening February 17th, 2023


Arch Enemy Arts presents INSIDE THE ACADEMY, a new solo feature by celebrated doom-folk artist, Joe Vollan. The series is comprised of ten framed graphite drawings on paper, created in secret with limited resources while the artist underwent treatment for a non-fatal suicide attempt this winter:


“There wasn’t a lot to do at the hospital. I found I was really inspired to draw [but] we were only allowed short ‘safety pencils.’ There was a section of concrete floor that I used to file the lead down to get a really fine point…The work itself isn’t about mental illness or suicide; it is just where my head was after going through what I went through and put others through. It was therapeutic, and I felt very free to just draw the first thing that popped into my head.”


The “safety pencils” Vollan used adorn two of the pieces in the series, and we see a kinship between these eccentric creatures and the artist’s signature episodic work. Dark signs and symbols, summoned by the artist’s subconscious, also remind us of the theory of Automatism, adopted by the early Surrealists. Letting the hand run freely with the least possible deliberation, artists may manifest dormant forms that are symbolic in meaning and wisdom, allowing them to express their full truth of feeling, to learn and grow from their innermost imagination.


Works from INSIDE THE ACADEMY are available for purchase and will be on-view through mid-March. Joe Vollan currently lives in Buffalo, NY, and this is the artist’s sixth solo feature with Arch Enemy Arts.

- written by Candice Musher

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts or actions call or text 988. (Suicide & Crisis Lifeline)

Joe Vollan's INSIDE THE ACADEMY exhibition will be on view from February 17th - March 12th, 2023
Sold works will begin to ship the week after the close of the exhibition, unless other arrangements have been made.

Items marked with a red dot have already been sold.

Payment plans are available. Click the purchase inquiry button below for more details.


all work marked with a red dot have been sold

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