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Glass, light and steel artist Jen Fuller and Douglas Detrick talk about how glass can inspire adaptability, collaboration, and surprise.

About Jen Fuller

Portland based installation artist, Jen Fuller, has been constructing ephemeral glass, steel, and light experiences throughout the United States for over a decade. As a self-taught artist, Fuller found her passion rooted in the traditional techniques of kiln-formed glass, Raku, and industrial welding. Her art reflects the delicate vulnerability and ever present interconnectedness of nature and humanity. Fuller’s work has been commissioned by Metro Regional Government, Ovation TV, Olbrich Botanical Garden, OMSI, Lan Su Chinese Garden, and private collectors around the world.

Episode Transcript

Intro

Welcome to More Devotedly, a podcast for people who see the arts as a force for positive, progressive change. I’m Douglas Detrick, this is Volume V, episode 1. 

As you move through your life, you move into and out of space. You move according to certain rules at some times, and you follow your own personal anarchy at others. At times, you’re under stress, sometimes you are fluid, sometimes you are solid, or at least you are super cool. Glass isn’t actually a solid, but a liquid frozen in mid-movement.

Glass lives by its own rules. Making glass art requires learning them and communicating through them. My guest for this episode is Jen Fuller, a glass, steel and light artist working in Portland, Oregon. 

As a self-taught artist, Jen found her passion rooted in the traditional techniques of kiln-formed glass, Raku, and industrial welding. Her art reflects the delicate vulnerability and ever present interconnectedness of nature and humanity. Her work has been commissioned by Metro Regional Government, Ovation TV, Olbrich Botanical Garden, OMSI, Lan Su Chinese Garden, and private collectors around the world. 

Jen offered a vivid metaphor about what it’s like to work with glass as a sculptor. As she manipulates glass of different colors and other properties, she imagines an ensemble of dancers. The idea is to create a beautiful dance, but when you look at each dancer, you see that this one dances samba, this one dances hip hop, and this one dances ballet. As the glass heats to 1200 degrees fahrenheit  and cools back to room temperature it hardens and flexes in different ways and at different rates. If she isn’t mindful of these differences as she works with it, she’ll end up with a kiln full of broken pieces.

We talked about how this metaphor can help us to understand the human dynamics of social movements and politics. For those of us who lean to the left, we have a wildly diverse coalition to maintain, whereas the Right is far more homogenous. To achieve a beautiful sculpture on our side, we have to move all the parts of the sculpture up to and down from temperature, and if we fail in that task, the parts of the coalition come apart.

I wanted to begin this volume by talking to a glass artist so we could talk about this adaptable yet willful material on its own terms. We met at her NE Portland studio to talk about glass, about what she has learned by working with it, and how the pandemic has affected her.

Interview

Douglas Detrick: So, Jen, welcome to more devotedly. I’m looking forward to this conversation today and as I’ve been doing with all of my guests basically since the pandemic started I just wanted to give the opportunity to just tell us how you’re doing and how things have been for you over the last year.

Jen Fuller: Yeah. Hi thanks for having me. I’m thriving. It feels cautious to say that out loud in public right now, But this has actually been a really good year for me to rest and regenerate in what is usually a pretty intense grind. So it’s exciting to kind of be reemerging into the world with all the things that have unfolded in the last year in my shop and in my personal life to be coming into spring with everything blooming and people’s attitudes shifting a little bit so pretty exciting right now you know for me. I know that that’s not been the case for a lot of people but I’m excited.

Douglas Detrick: You know of course we need to hold that space for these other folks that are suffering more but at the same time like if you if you are strong and if you’re coming from a strong place you can be strong for other people as well. it’s been one of the harder years of my of my recent life because of issues that I won’t go into but at the same time I think all of those issues have been opportunities for me to think new thoughts and to make new decisions and say Oh yeah Okay So that is something I can change that and I can do something different here. And so that’s been good and I think most of my of the guests on the podcast anyway have had a similar experience where this has been a good opportunity to to reevaluate

Jen Fuller: The re-evaluation for certain I think what you’re talking about is interesting to me though because I think as a as a creative my job is to be always problem-solving and to be having new thoughts and to be moving through Sort of untangible unknowns. And so I think creatives are in general kind of set up for this sort of scenario. And I think the biggest struggle I experienced during this time period was the social pressure to be prolific, you know with the downtime. And I really allowed myself to step away from that notion and have the time off that I needed to regenerate.

You know cause so there’s this sort of fallacy that artists are always always making and always have ideas. And we do but we really do need fallow field cycles which is where you know you’ve got nothing planted. That’s where all the juicy things come from is deep boredom, deep imagination. And in our current Western modality of you know mindset we’re always like driving driving driving hamster wheeling and succeeding. And so as a creative I really looked at this as an opportunity to let the field go fallow for quite a while. And so I’m excited to say you know like all history presents is that at the end of these enormously sort of rigid cycles and there’s this burst forth like the Renaissance. There’s a lot of talk about the dark ages you know and after that was the Renaissance. There’s a reason for that but there’s this precedent for social pressure for artists to be prolific. And I heard a lot about during this time like writing the great American you know the next great American Western novel and it like a screw all that I need a break from from the the expectations of my peers.

Douglas Detrick: folks look from their perspective and see us as either as lazy bums or as like magicians who create things out of nothing. And neither one of those are true It’s actually you know it takes a lot of hard work.

Jen Fuller: Hard work.

Douglas Detrick: an idea to finish something. Yeah.

Part I – Glass Basics

Douglas Detrick: So the the podcast comes out in volumes of episodes where there’s a central theme that all the guests are talking about from their own perspectives And and so the last time it was last summer and so protests were going on in Portland, Federal agents were here yeah we were a anarchist jurisdiction for awhile. All those things and incredible amounts of pain being experienced especially by black Americans who are advocating you know just for peace and justice in their own communities. And so it was a time where I wanted to Create some space for for Portlanders to talk about Portland and what it feels like to be here during that time.

And as I was scoring that episode with or those episodes with music I started collecting a bunch of different glass mostly bottles some vases I went to Goodwill and was like tapping on vases and listening you know to the to the pitch and tone quality that they were producing and got a lot of funny looks. And so it was like but I picked that because you know glass is from an acoustic perspective It is you know it’s super resonant or it can be it can be really loud It can be really delicate. And also you can it’s really recognizable cause you can cue you can tell what you’re hearing.

But I think the reason I chose that then was because it felt like Portland at that time because it felt like A fragile sound. You know so as I went through with that it was making more of this music And then I started reading about how glass is made and reading about glass making and glass art and the history of it and all those things, It was like you know there’s there’s really a lot more to this than this idea of fragility. So I wanted to you know one thing that I wanted to be sure that I did with this group of episodes it was to talk to a glass artist who can talk about talk about glass. And and especially from this perspective of like actually working with it and you know what does it what does it look like? What does it smell Like? What does it feel like? How does it make you feel as you’re working?

Jen Fuller: Well I always start with the notion that it’s it’s all chemical. Right It’s a tear transformational material that has a lot of it’s very elemental. So when you’re working with it it’s it’s a very elemental experience. It’s one born of fire and you know sweat and hard work. The kind of glass work that I do is kiln form glass. So it’s not as dynamic as all of the things that people you know describe because I’m not a glassblower. So people think of you being in the fire which I am not but there’s still this great element of heat present in my work. You know on average I’m running around 1500 degrees is my stable you know I’m really like 1200 degrees to 1500 degrees as my stable pattern of of working and thinking.. I’m not in the kiln when it’s that temperature but that’s how I’m thinking of the glass and molten state at all times. So it’s a very interesting and dynamic material largely because that’s the only one like it on planet earth. It’s considered a super cool liquid. So I get all nerdy at this point you know so it’s like one part magic one part chemistry one part advanced molecular science. And that just kind of amalgamates into this wizard and hard work fiery pain in the ass experience.

Glass really has a mind of its own and it’s a lot about wrangling it and controlling and convincing it to be what you want it to be. And so there’s a lot of perseverance and patience and just letting the material be what it wants to be while simultaneously pushing the boundaries of this experimental material. That you know it’s really groundbreaking still. It was brought to the U S in the sixties through the craft movement and kiln form really I want to say please don’t quote me if I’m wrong on this but it’s about 20 years old. So a lot of my peers right now and colleagues in the glass world are doing things that have never been done in the history of mankind and to be an artist at that sort of level there’s this real excitement in groundbreaking innovation that happens in our shop on a daily basis. Like right now I’m making a series of botanicals and I’m certain that some of the things that I’ve making have never been made before. Not necessarily the techniques I use but the subject matter and the application and how many times in human history do you get to be pioneering in the field.

Douglas Detrick: Usually not.

Jen Fuller: No. Yeah, so you could really get to be like a magician and a pioneer. When I’m working in my kiln I feel like I own my own little universe. I say it time and time again but it is like opening the sun. When it’s hot and when it’s operational and I’m checking the glass you are you know you’ve got a four-foot universe that you’re in control of. You’re making sure that molds and heat ratios and you know molecular science and chemistry are all combining for this magic moment of stability because that’s what you’re really always looking for in the glass is that the glass is maintaining a cohesive sense of stability so that it doesn’t break on the way up or break on the way down of cooling.

Douglas Detrick: Right Yeah I mean even just I remember reading about like an annealing oven right. Tell me what I get wrong here but it’s so it’s it’s it’s a heated environment that you put a piece in to cool it down slowly because if it cools down too quickly it will break.

Jen Fuller: Yeah Well you have that happening on both ends right So glass needs to be brought up slowly and taken down slowly in a heat cycle. I wish you could see this because I always do this molecular happy dance but to try to describe it in musical terms that’s as though somebody is doing improv hip hop and somebody else is doing classical you know Samba in you know and then somebody else is doing jazz or ballet. And you’re trying to get all of those people to come into one unified vision. So they’re they’re dancing at the same rate. And so it’s a heat heat and time equation. And it’s a language you build with the material and in yourself that’s where the expertise comes in is that you’re kind of operating in this language this digital language to control the molecular frequency. That’s it you know transpiring the vibration pattern and it’s called coefficients of expansion. So we think as glass artists in COE and to go back to the dancing analogy you have to slow you know slow the music way down and give people a lot of time you know to get the ballet and the hip hop and the jazz dancer and the Samba like communicating properly you know and if they’re wearing different colors and they’re in different parts of the world it takes even you know more time you know so and and more slow rhythm to get everybody to to run at the same rates. So that’s what you’re doing when you’re no matter if you’re in any form of glass you’re just always conscious that the COE needs to be in a state of molecular stability. it’s so utilitarian on one hand and so enormously fragile on the other. And it’s a constant game of perspective shifting.

Douglas Detrick: Hmm.

Jen Fuller: So all of this you know it it amounts to something and it’s very metaphorical but it always come back time and time again to the fact that we don’t think about how flexible glasses and I mean literally and figuratively. If two people are standing eight feet apart and they have a one inch slice of glass between the two and both start wiggling it the whole glass will wave. It bends. It’s very flexible in hand. We use it all the time with from the tea we’re drinking at the table here, to the windows We’re looking through, our car windshields our cell phone, you know the glass in our cell phones was is coming from Corning in New York. So we don’t think about our contact with it all the time but the moment that you’re in a museum or you’re looking at a gallery it’s this

Douglas Detrick: So right. Sure yeah. Yeah. Well, it can and I think that was one thing that I was surprised by that I had learned that that it can be very strong depending on how it’s made. Well I think one of the things that has been fastened to me as a as a metaphor maybe to kind of wrap up this part of the conversation is a bit about this idea of a coalition. And by by that I mean like with with glass you know as you were kind of talking about these different ingredients are added so you might add one ingredient and I have no idea what it would be but like let’s say you need to create a color. You add an ingredient and that’s going to have an effect on the others and it’s going to change the property is in so you have to compensate with others. And so this this this idea of like building this recipe that that works in the real world you know like when you heat it up and when you try to work with it does it stay together? Does it do what it’s supposed to do? All the time The things it’s a lot similar to how we build movements and how we build like a political coalition in order to get something done to to actually change something. You have to bring together all these different groups that have different different goals and you know different values and you have to find where the overlap is and you have to… it’s it’s hard It’s it’s it’s very difficult work. And but just that idea of with glass how we you know this idea of a recipe that you know we’ll create a glass with a certain character you know with certain qualities. Does that does that kind of get your mind going a little bit too.

Jen Fuller: I mean I think about it all the time especially because of the kind of artwork I make. You know it speaks a lot to to natural tendency into the human condition. That’s that’s what you know my my conceptual background is in creating experiences for the public that are based off of nature and human experience and mythologies. So glass in that way is very like poignant for me to be constantly in contact with because of all the things that you’re saying. And as you you’re speaking to that it’s it’s very interesting for me to think about the last year that’s unfolded with the United States.

Glass it like you can approach the bench and do the same thing over and over and over again 10 times in a row, And at least in my shop one out of those 10 times it will do something completely unaccountable. You you know like that you don’t you don’t know why it did what it did. And so there’s this real like tendency to have inner flexibility. And again perseverance has everything to mean that the glass world as in politics and you know social justice and reform is that you have all these ingredients coming together and they create a contact reaction. And a lot of times in glass you can expect what it’s going to be but you can’t control it. And or you are expecting that something is going to go this way and it veers way left. And I think that that’s really true of The human condition At large. You can think you’re going in a direction and ended up somewhere elsewhere. And so for me glass is a collaborator it’s like dealing with another human. And in a lot of ways it’s prepared me for you know the sort of social climate that we’re in because I’m accustomed to to being in a flow state with a thing that’s uncontrollable but definable. You know or or long term projection definable. So you have to work really hard at it all the time and be loose in the hips as we say you have to be flexible with it. And it was a prepares you in a large way for everything that’s that’s unfolding.

Part 2 – “Thriving”

Douglas Detrick: I asked you how you were and you said you were thriving. And so I would love to talk about that and you know I think the first thing we did is we felt some guilt about saying that right. And and so you know it’s good to recognize that And I you know I think that that’s makes sense and it’s okay to feel that. And I think it’s also okay to feel like this has been like a net positive time in some ways too. So but anyway I mean tell me a bit about what that means for you and what does that mean for your work., You talked about letting there be kind of a resting time a fallow time. and now you’re talking about things are growing again So tell us tell us a bit about that

Jen Fuller: Yeah well a little bit of a backstory on that for me I guess it would be slightly necessary here is is that I had gone through a three-year period of the worst time of my life. I had gone through six deaths in rapid succession in my personal life of people Very very dear To me. There was no time to even be able to calibrate the grief or the you know the healing and when you’re in it when you’re in the thick of something you have to be in it. and over the top of that it was more prolific in that time period than I’d ever been. So it was traveling all over the country doing installations. And you know there’s just not a lot of money or merit and being an artist A lot of the time. I saw that a lot this year actually there’s this the first thing that got cut out with a pandemic was the arts. Right The arts funding And yet when everybody was at home acting like the arts didn’t matter what were they doing? You know like what what movie were you watching? What artists were you listening to? What got you through? it’s just this grand irony. So I kind of always bear that balance. And I think artists are often very empathetic people And so you’re wanting to be positioned in a state of empathy where you’re aware that other people are suffering aware of your own you know your own suffering.

So this past year I just was able to like really kind of step back because a lot of the money and the imagery index dropped away. You know So I allowed myself to sit into not being on the hamster wheel I took the opportunity to heal my heart from all the grief Cause I got to slow down and stop traveling and stop doing all the performance monkey things that I had been doing to keep it all barely going that whole time. that’s what was so restorative for me. And I I feel bad that other people had a really rough year had I had inner reckoning but I feel like I had already been living in that reckoning for years on end. You know it was sort of this constant artists crisis happening for me like the myth of the starving artist and the myth of following your dreams is this heavy overtone to what I do all the damn time.

Douglas Detrick: Yeah I know

Jen Fuller: You know And so last year was like this opportunity for a break from that. And also you know so much of my storefront as an artist and my visibility is through social media. I know some of these things were unfolding it tanked my visibility. I know it was actually happy because how many times I actually wish that I could just drop it all and walk away for three months at a time and like go to the Arctic where nobody can reach me. I you know in in a in an amazing way those opportunities came this year. And so I think it’s about your receptivity and your presence of mind to the things that are unfolding around you and whether you’re going to seize that opportunity for what it is.

Douglas Detrick: As we are No not allowed to leave our houses And then so we go home we turn on Netflix you know we read our books we listen to our music. All things made by artists. And and so it it does seem to me like there’s been a big conversation about value, right. So like these things that we care about and where the price is not always reflective of the value. So I guess what I’m getting at is to say that this is a time of change And if we have these opportunities to say you know these these people that are making our food or or you know whatever and making our art they maybe they also deserve a minimum wage. That’s higher things like that.

Jen Fuller: That pairs with how you know like that that’s an opinion column for me right If it falls under the category of of opinions which is you know my opinion about how the whole pandemic was handled at large in this country and the vaccination situation the rollout of that and who was prioritized and vaccination speaks volumes that people’s priorities in this country. You know and I don’t put artists in that category of necessity when it comes to that at all and so I think when we talk about change being a foot I don’t see it. Because I you know like I see these things that were critically important to the health and wellbeing of our country. And we certainly didn’t do are essential workers right In my opinion during this whole thing.

And opinions are running rampant and probably our biggest problem right now right is everybody’s got an opinion and is vocalizing it. And I’m not actually interested in putting my opinion into the hat through any other means except for through my art. that’s my my vocal capacity is through my ability to make experiences that draw you in and allow you to think of it as your own experience and not as mine or my opinion but to just show you or offer different vantage points about ordinary everyday experiences or objects.

So what I find fascinating about the pandemic too is an artist is often working currently on something that the public doesn’t embrace for three years. So the things that have happened in the pandemic artistically for me won’t show up in my narrative or my body of work until several years down the road When when the public is actually ready to start receiving it or it’s flushed out enough. So yes I would hope that there is change but I think in my I hope in my lifetime we continue to have discussions about value at large. Right I think that’s why I was thriving in the pandemic Personally is my success levels in my mind When everything got cut away you know when the shows and the social media and you know dancing on Sundays with your friends and all of that got stripped away my world was still I would say 90% operable. It didn’t change in radical ways It changed in radically wonderful ways. Suddenly I didn’t have to contend with how people felt about my work or thought about me or what I was doing And I could just come and actually work in my studio. I rebuilt my entire studio.

Most creatives that I know and look look to that are big names in the hat are saying the same thing is they’re reentering now but they’re not sure that they want to add it back to their plate. And so for the first time in my art career this past year I got to make a choice. I got to choose myself over everything else. And now with this renewal I’m able to see it coming at me and re choose you know very personally choose whether I want to contend with that taker mentality.

You know cause I have organizations that I work with that I would give anything to I’ll do all the free work in the world for you know people that respect my work and respect how I work and you know foster mutually beneficial relationships across the board when push comes to shove those are the ones that nurture you. You know but a culture that takes all the time that you know demands that you show up demands that you work yourself to the bone demands that you’re a purist and happy in what you do and are the thought leader, And yet has no nurturing backbone, Doesn’t provide for you in any capacity emotionally physically. You know you can see it coming now Cause he had a year off and I’m not biting I’m just not I’m not very impressed with all the yes men out there anymore. And it’s going to be great And this is going to do this and this and this for you.

Because when it was all stripped away I had what I had already invested in which is incredible people. They want to see work made. They want to be there that want to just hang out and drink a beer and make some things innovate and then find a space to put it and celebrate people and foster interdisciplinary connection and cross boundary you know explorations both materialistically and emotionally and you know genetically So you know that’s That’s where the goods are And I think a lot of people woke up to that.

Douglas Detrick: Even though everyone’s choices constrained by their personal circumstances there still are some choices that you can make and and and trying to make each one The best thing for you is is important. And maybe this is a good opportunity for people to remember that and just have some practice and remember what that looks like and what that feels like.. It could be a really positive thing.

Jen Fuller: That’s my hopes for people at large right now Western mindsets tend to come out of the gates racing and want to just jump right back on the wheel and ignore it all and move beyond it and forget you know we have a hustle culture. So I’m hoping that this woke people up a little bit to fishermen life mentality which was a little bit more you know like beach life and go with the flow and and deal with what’s in front of your face. I mean this whole Western construct of what America runs it’s actually very new. And this is not how we’ve done life for millennia. This is you know maybe a 50 60 year construct We’re running in thinking thinking that it’s real. And then it’s right and we’re very I was very young and very new all the things that are happening.

So my hopes where people are that they Can come out of this with with a value renewal in themselves. Or like an understanding of where their value structures lie. This is very personal for me but I had to choose between motherhood and being an artist early on in my career. For so many reasons. My material is toxic. You know my work life is crazy frenetic it’s kind of an all or nothing game. And so I chose Art over parenting and you go through a million times in your life where you ask yourself did I make the right decision. And I allow myself to move through that and not like berate myself over those things. But in the pandemic I was going yes I’m stoked right now. And I felt so much pain for my friends with children you know and it was like for once I made the right decision for me but you know that’s a personal joke that it is carried me through this you know and at the the joking expense of my friends who have suffered enormously this year of course. So excuse me since a humor about it, But I just hope that we come out of this emerge with with some reckoning of where we want our values to be seated and then can hold on to that and continue to re-enter with that refocus and connection point.

Douglas Detrick: You know you were talking about there’s like a limited amount of time when the glass is at the temperature that it can be manipulated, right. Where it can be reformed. So we’re kind of at that time right now and it’s going to cool down and form into a new shape. Right Yeah I think so I think maybe that’s a helpful way to kind of close that metaphor.

Jen Fuller: And we’re in an annealing cycle which is where all the breakage happens.

Douglas Detrick: Right.

Jen Fuller: Everyone has got to do this just really slowly and gently you know with each other with oneself. Yeah, time versus temperature. That’s the equation in life It’s the perfect metaphor.

Douglas Detrick: Right. Yeah.

Part 3: Being Surprised

Douglas Detrick: So you talked about this kind of constant element of being surprised by the glass that you’re working with, that it kind of defies your your will or your expectation of like what you’re trying to achieve. And I’m curious if you have one that sticks out in your memory of a time where maybe a colossal failure or a like or maybe it was a failure that turned into a success or something like that. I’m curious if you have you know a way that you can kind of bring people into your into your process into your studio a little bit in that way.

Jen Fuller: it’s built in my ethos As a glass artist and as an artist that there aren’t failures and mistakes there’s only observations and understandings. And it’s really tenuous there because it can get all just too trite and tied up with a bow. Because there’s a lot of times I’m standing in the kill and I’m pissed off because I got a deadline and something went awry. And that’s not a moment that I sat there and I’m like you know yay It’s a lesson learned you know to what doesn’t you know. It’s not in in the moment Somebody tells me to breathe or tries to give me a mantra or tells me that I should learn from it The outcome is me punching them in the nose. So it’s really really care You know I have to be so careful there about tying it up so neatly and people want to hear the neat version. They don’t necessarily want to know the messy version.

But for myself it’s built in every day to have to maintain room for the unknown and room for flexibility. So what that kind of ends up visibly looking like is piles around my studio as even privy to of unknowns. And I don’t look at them as failures or mistakes I look at them as that didn’t go the way I thought And so like I’ll write temperatures and times on them I’ll write color patterns. I’ll be like why the heck did that happen. my mentor which we haven’t spoken about here he is a metal artist and he makes his own found objects. And I’ve kind of adopted that principle So much of my materials are coming from reclaimed sources to begin with like a lot of my glasses reclaimed especially in the beginning of my career I was working with a landfill then. And so all the things I was pulling into my studio were already kind of damaged and what the fuck ish. Excuse my mouth. He takes new and then through mistakes ends up with piles of scraps on the bench that we then turn around a year or three or 10 and realize well that makes a great horse thigh or that would make the raddest mane.

So I look at it like that It’s not a lesson to be learned but it’s an it it’s not something to be also scrapped You know like we put it we hold a place for the unknowns and the unknowns continue to live around us until they become friends. Until they find the place their place in the studio.

And I can only think of one like moment like that That was really visually arresting. All the rest of them have been very subtle and then have informed all the future of my work. And like I was saying so much of what I do is three years out, The public’s view is three years out but I’m working on it now. So any one of the objects that I’ve worked on my airplanes my botanical specimens my glass bodies had stages of development that were just purely experimental and then laid around for years on end I was on a pretty serious run of glass paper planes So I fold paper planes and they kill them out of reclaimed window glass And I was doing an installation for or Oregon museum of science and industry. And so it was 150 planes that I was making and I can make six a day. And it was one of those perfect one in 10 moments Which is I opened the kiln and I looked in and my heart sank but it was just a complete WTF moment It was what the fuck is going on here. And I pulled the piece and I I have these weighting clips structures that mold the glass into that shape And I had misaligned it in the piece came out like a colossal dinosaur facemask that Viking would wear. And it’s so visually arresting. And in sitting on my bench reminds me every day about my capacity to err but make something truly interesting. And yet I’ve never made anything out of it I thought during the pandemic about pulling it out and making a glass face mask out of it but I haven’t done it because that’s not the conceptual things I’m wading through. I haven’t put any of the pandemic stuff into my narrative as an artist yet because I don’t like to say things so directly while it’s transpiring. So there’s going to be no like face mask art from me until maybe like five years now in a very abstract way. So so that’s how I would answer that if it’s interesting I don’t know but that’s the only time I can remember a visually arresting moment happening but all the rest of them are these momentary like small increments of change that informed the work constantly forward. And we keep them all around. So invite invite the unknown into your world and live with it until you get to know it.

Douglas Detrick: Yeah that sounds right To me. It sounds right to me. Yeah Well thank you so much Jen This has been really fun.

Outro

Douglas Detrick: Thank you, Jen. Learn more about Jen’s work by going to the episode page on moredevotedly.com. If you like this podcast, please rate and review the show on whatever platform you use to listen. It helps other listeners find More Devotedly, and that makes me happy. And if you aren’t already, please subscribe so you can hear all of the inspiring conversations I’ve had and will have with artists here. 

Be sure to follow the show on Instagram and Facebook, find it @moredevotedly. And if you aren’t on the show’s email list, head on over to moredevotedly.com and sign up. You’ll hear about new episodes and other big announcements.

You’ve been listening to More Devotedly. My name is Douglas Detrick, and I produced this interview and created the music here in Portland, OR.

[Can I take a picture?]

What you’re doing is beautiful. Can you do it more devotedly?

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