Artist: Jennifer Chen
Media: Print studio
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Gatov Gallery West
Website: No Website
Instagram: No Instagram
This week for our artist conversation, I got the chance to meet Jennifer Chen. This is currently her last year here in California State University Long Beach. She is an undergraduate here at CSULB and used to be a Biology major until she realized her interests were focused more on art. She has a lot of different interests other than biology that she thinks will help her grow in different ways. This Printmaking program Chen is in is a way to help her reflect, express, and connect herself to the different art pieces she creates. Her art works explore the idea of the disturbance of landscapes or monuments that has been changed over time by nature itself. Besides Chen’s work in digital printing, she worked in a Bio corps and small, midsize companies that help people revolve around the health business. Chen’s plans in the future are to teach the Art 270 class here in CSULB where she gets to not only help others pursue their interest in art, but also gain more money!
Chen’s artworks consist of an image she searches from Google Maps or of what she takes using her own camera. She prints out these landscape pictures on Epson and spends a lot of time photoshopping these images. She then finalizes her work, prints it out using a silk screen to create her stencil before she starts painting from there. At the end, Chen would use a gloss to lay over the art piece to make it look 3-dimensional. All of her art pieces are fairly similar yet different. She uses a lot of colors such as green, pink, white, grey and more. Most of her works have a lot of bits and pieces that are jagged and very blotchy. Other works such as the green and pink one has a lot of rectangles, straight lines, but once looking closer can see the crooked and jagged lines. This is due to her photoshopping these pieces because she cuts and pastes these images everywhere, giving it a very jagged look. The texture on all her work are very shiny and glossy because of the gloss layer she adds on them.
Chen’s artworks are about the changes that happens to nature’s landscape after disturbances such as floods, fires, etc. Overtime, these landscapes changes and she tries to capture these different changes into her art. An example Chan gave us was that overtime these landscape changes from weeds being grown to shrubs and trees. Not only does Chen create pieces that show the overall change in a landscape, she also makes pieces that magnifies something you don’t notice in every day life. An example would be the piece where she magnifies a piece of bark and she tries to capture the qualities it has that people do not often take notice of. She hopes that whoever sees her work will take notice of the changes and/or disturbances the nature takes on different landscapes.
I thought Chen’s work was pretty interesting because of the process she goes about in creating her pieces. I notice a lot of artists either use only paint, color pencils, spray paint, markers or etc to create their pieces however, Chen’s way of using digital printing and coating it with gloss is very intriguing on my part. Her work of the disturbance of landscapes resonates with my life because I usually don’t take notice of how drastic nature can change within a matter of years. Since I live in an area with a lot of hiking trails, trees, and greenery I usually take these beautiful sites and views for granted. I see how in the fall, the colors start to fade and as spring time comes, everything is in full bloom! This made me realize that sometimes I do take things for granted and should be more grateful for what I have around me.