Up to the minute studio posts can be seen on Instagram @newpractice
Represented on Artfare https://www.artfare.com/jennie-kiessling
My work is first about formal concerns related to history and theories of Abstraction. In particular, hard edged, minimal and geometric structures in both drawing and painting. In Contemporary Art the discourse around Abstraction includes recognition that lived experience plays a role in what was thought to be “only” about form and, basically, devoid of any “real” content other than itself. Though story was always part of Abstraction, this “new” discussion has broadened the possibilities for painting and drawing.
As a painter in the 21st Century, how do I make work that responds genuinely within this lineage at the same time identifying a new truth? That question points to the approach and structure of my work. To expand “laws” of abstraction, revisit past processes, and reflect the realities of my lived experience. This manifests in a subtle play with language; words that some may not understand. Ad Reinhardt, Agnes Martin and Ilya Bolotowsky are major influences. Small, intimate work is necessary for a quiet discussion with a viewer. Taking the lid off of the personal to connect with the universal is necessary for making work that identifies our time. Topics that I have not discussed prior in my work are now history. What was, is no longer. However, the essence of that collective experience, in time, continues to ripple through our lives. For some as if for the first time – to me very familiar. How do I address this is in a way that activates and opens the heart of the viewer so that through our collective experience we attain individual moments of liberation?
Born and raised in Chicago, I arrived to live in the Western states in 2000. My studio time is split between Santa Fe, NM and Masonville, CO. I teach beginning and advanced students during spring semesters in Fort Collins, CO. My work is in private collections, shown locally, nationally and has been published by Phaidon Press. I am a recipient of NEA and NEH grants. My graduate work was completed at the University of Chicago; my undergraduate work completed at School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC).
I have taught for the Art Education Department of School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Art Depts. of Colorado State University, the University of Wyoming and Naropa University. After serving as Lead Faculty for Visual and Media Arts in CADHu (Department of Creative Arts Design and Humanities) at Front Range Community College in Ft. Collins, Colorado, I have returned to my work as an adjunct faculty member which provides focused time for my studio practice and research. In addition, I served as the Assistant Director for the Division of Continuing Studies (SAIC), Cultural Enrichment Manager for the Chicago Park District, the Communications Coordinator for the Wyoming Arts Council and Assistant Director of the Hatton Gallery at Colorado State University.
Contact: J.L.Kiessling (at) gmail.com