Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Jennifer Davis - Painter

Jennifer Davis ~

You are currently exhibiting as part of the Minnesota Artist Exhibition Program (MAEP) at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. This seems like quite and honor and opportunity. Tell me about the work you are showing there.

Yes. I am so excited and honored to be included in this exhibition. For this show I have made a new series of large (relative to my past works anyway, 30x24”) paintings on panel. As is usual for my work, they contain a lot of silly characters and invented symbolism but I have spent more time fussing over patterns and surface. These are some of my largest works to date and they presented a whole new world of puzzles for me.

What process did you go through to exhibit with the MAEP program?

I owe everything to Terrence Payne as he helped so much with the proposal process. We put together a written proposal for a show (via the guidelines on their website) and the MAEP panel selected us to be paired with Joe (Sinness) and Erika (Olson Gross) who had also submitted a proposal together. When I found out we got the show I was pretty dumbstruck. When it comes to art proposals/grant applications, etc. rejections are so common that I had completely put the whole thing out of my mind. Once our proposal was accepted we followed a detailed timeline to organize and plan the exhibition. I locked myself in my studio and painted like a crazy women.

Many artists find art to be a solitary experience, where creating community can be difficult. I wonder if you have a similar or different experience. How would you describe the Twin Cities art community and your place in it?

For me, creating art is a truly solitary experience. Even if I am collaborating or working with others, time in my own head is a huge part of my creative process. I love working alone and can do so for days at a time but it is not a lonely process. There is a huge community of other artists doing the same thing. Whenever I emerge from my cave it is easy to find them. It would be hard to describe the art community because it is always changing (galleries, artists always coming and going) and every person’s experience with it is unique. Some find it welcoming and open, others not so much. It is what you make of it. I have met so many amazing and inspiring people at art galleries. What’s not to love?

You have exhibited in Boston, Ontario, Los Angeles, and Atlanta (that I am aware of). Have you ever considered leaving Minnesota for a bigger art market?

Yes. I do get the itch to move on sometimes. However, my situation right now is ideal for me. I am able to support myself making my art with out a job, my BF and I each have a studio in our house and I really like it here. Artists have so much control of their own work now that it is easy to live in the Midwest and still show all over the world. I don’t rule out a move. Someday…

What was the best advice given to you as an artist?

Have thick skin. Stay true to my own vision and allow disappointments to roll off quickly.

Which Minnesota artists do you enjoy?
Many of the same artists that have already been listed on this site! Instead I’ll list some shows I want to see that are happening right NOW:

What was the last local exhibit you saw and what were your impressions?

“Trust is the New Money” by BrokenCrow (John Grider and Mike Fitzsimmons) at XYandZ Gallery. I have loved their work since the first time I saw it but this show really blew my face off. The entire gallery was one big giant painting. It was beautiful, scary, cute, hopeful, hilarious…I loved it. (It closes this weekend so giddy up if you want to see it!)

Where do you go online for good art resources, whether to find a new artist, or to see what is going on in the art world locally and otherwise?

Daily Serving
Beautiful Decay
My Love For You Is A Stampede of Horses
Art Hound
Fecal Face
• etc, etc, etc.

How do you incorporate your blog, Facebook, and other social media/internet resources into your life as an artist?

Like many, I have a love/hate relationship with social media. I enjoy making my blog and I know that all of these tools are so useful for sharing art outside of my little bubble. Now there are so many tools that it has become overwhelming. To update my flickr, blog, website, etsy, twitter…YIKES! My time is better spent making paintings.

Do you have any exhibits or any interesting things going on in your life or coming up in the near future?

This winter/spring I’ll be showing my work in NY, NH, Canada- and a couple of places in Mpls, MN. I took a tiny break after finishing my work for the MAEP but now I am back to work.

1 comment:

Michael McGraw - said...

I just got back from the MAEP artist presentation and it was really great to hear the artists talk about their work. I definitely recommend going to these sorts of presentations when you can.

Great job all of you. I'm looking forward to Erika's interview coming up soon.