Friday, November 19, 2010

Friday Feature

This is Jaklyn. I have already stated multiple times that I have an artist crush on this lady. Over the past few months she has become a close and inspiring friend. We are part of a small community group together and I have been blessed by her leadership. She has helped me see that I have the courage and the resources to start new, reminded me that it isn't weak to admit when the emotions are too strong, and today she is someone that celebrates new joys with me.

She answered some of the same Friday Feature questions as my other artist friends and I think you will enjoy her answers.
1. Who inspires you?
I'm inspired by courageous people. Courageous people who are also artists are not only fascinating but in my mind also make an incredible impact on the world. Mexican painter Frida Coelho comes to mind as a fearless and uninhibited woman whose artistic expression inspires me towards honesty in all I make. Sister Corita Kent was another courageous woman whose serigraphs are not only rich to me aesthetically (love her use of color!) but also combine her faith which informed her advocacy towards radical social justice. Another rad female artist who is alive (yay!) and creating out of Oakland is Favianna Rodriguez. Her drawings and screenprints are my favorite and often involve themes of social justice for immigrants and refugees.
I'm also inspired by my friends- people who love others relentlessly, who face their own fears, who are honest with themselves, who show up for life ready to give.

2. What is your favorite thing to create?
As far as getting my hands into things... screenprinting: few things are more satisfying than pulling ink through the screen and seeing what happens on the paper. Of course, you're supposed to know what's going to happen, but then there's that random smudge or the opacity that didn't turn out as expected which is sometimes fun and sometimes not. The anticipation that the process builds keeps it exciting for me. Screenprinting, especially in your bedroom, is a very involved process with a lot of variables. It's messy and there's a lot of room for error. Which is why, when you finally get to part where you actually get to print, it feels so good. I like to start a painting with a general sketch and visual concept but always leave a lot of room for changes. Some artists are very technical. I am not. Screenprinting and painting and photography can all be technical and I admire those who operate on that level but for me it is mostly intuitive and tactile and expressive. I'm a feeler and honesty is important to me so I bring that into my creative process and pay a lot of attention to what I need and want to communicate.

3. How did you get into textile art?
My creative journey began as many do with crayons and paper and paint as a child. I just did a lot of it. I kept doing a lot of it through middle and high school and by the time I started taking chemistry and trigonometry I knew I wasn't cut out for anything involving equations. I got through with good grades but didn't honestly give any genuine effort for anything other than art. It's a safe place for me to be who I am and I love that it allows others to do the same. I went to the College of Design at North Carolina State University studying studio art and design after being turned down twice. Welcome to competition and exclusivity! But there I worked with amazing classmates who I admire immensely and grew and grew and there I was introduced to screenprinting and another favorite, textile art. I tend to bounce around combining methods and materials and I'm thankful that in my training I wasn't limited to one but introduced to many techniques and disciplines.

4. If you could wake up anywhere in the world where would it be?
If I could wake up anywhere I would wake up to the sound of roosters crowing, children crying, and mosquitoes buzzing in Adjumani, northern Uganda.

5. What excites you about life?
People, adventures, love, explorations, taking risks, trusting a loving God.

When I asked her to provide an image of some art she loves she shared the piece below. It takes my breath away and I had to know it's story so clearly I asked.

This one is part of a series of three called "The Fierce Urgency of Now". The first two in the series I created before living in northern Uganda for a year and involve themes of war, child soldiers, darkness v. light, intrusion and the perseverance of joy and hope in the midst of that. I started this third painting in the series before leaving but was having a hard time finishing it when I decided to wait until my return and sort of culminate the series with my reflections from the year. I'm really glad I waited. The first two reflect very real themes but my only influence for those two were the media, books and films that I was immersed in as I attempted to understand the conflict in northern Uganda and how it was affecting the lives of people there. The third painting reflects a calmer, more grounded perspective. Still there are themes of light and dark, but I was creating from a much less chaotic frame of mind and focusing more on hopes of restoration, life and beauty flourishing on a backdrop of darkness. The sun rising behind the tukuls is an image that remains in my mind from the many mornings waking up in La Jopi village. It reminds me that no matter how difficult the day before was or how hard it was to sleep that night, the sun rises in the morning bringing new life, fresh perspective and the hope of a new day ahead.
Check her out here:

By the way: the piece above is for sale, as is the first piece in the series.

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