Artist Spotlight #74: Jenna Pippett

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Jenna Pippett. Detail: Levitate, 2016-17, chairs, cloth, fastenings, screen, digital video loop (production still)

Inspired by her ancestry, Jenna Pippett seeks to create aesthetic and visual connections that help her understand her family history. In our latest spotlight, Jenna talks about her busy month ahead and who would play her in a film about her life.

Q: Hello Jenna! Can you please tell us a bit about yourself?

A: I’m an emerging artist who graduated from the Adelaide Central School of Art in 2012. I work as a Gallery Assistant at Hugo Michell Gallery, a Co-Director at FELTspace, and play wing on the infamous art/netball team, Van Goal!

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“Placing myself within the image of the stamp furthers the idea of a fabricated world, as I enter history in multiple places.” – Stamp Collection, 2012

Q: Who inspires you? What inspires your art?

A: Artistically, my family – in particular, my Grandmother (Babi) on my mother’s side. My family immigrated to Australia from the Czech Republic in the late 60s and I’m interested in examining a personal past using family memorabilia. Responding to items and stories, I create work offering visual links, engaging with a personal history.

Q: Do you have a preferred medium?

A: Yes, I prefer working digitally as a means to present performance and installation.

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“The work records a process of successive photos that have been projected onto a wall: whilst the artist mimics the poses, dressed and painted totally in white.” – Together Series, 2012

Q: How would you describe your style?

A: Visual remembering often with an element of humour.

Q: Can you please describe your artistic and creative process i.e.: from lingering idea to putting it into practice?

A: I start with an article of family memorabilia and then explore stories and events surrounding the piece. It might just involve me, or I will enlist others to participate in the work. The work is recorded and edited and then I will often consider its place within a larger installation.

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“In this exhibition, Jenna poses as a boy-man in military uniform, larger than life with the feigned omnipresence of a communist leader surveying household and national conduct.” – I Could Have Been Canadian, 2014

Q: Where do you see your art practice taking you in the next five years?

A: This is a tricky one, I would like to exhibit interstate again in the coming years, and hope to undertake an international residency.

Q: If you could recommend one artist, who would it be?

A: Locally, you should keep an eye on Meg Wilson, I enjoy how she combines theatrical performance elements in her artistic practice. She has a unique set of skills and her outcomes are always fascinating to witness!

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“Memoriam examines a simple memory I have from when I was 9 years old, whilst travelling overseas visiting my great- grandmother’s town and gravesite. ” – Memoriam, 2014

Q: What is your favourite gallery?

A: FELTspace, because it is a fantastic ARI that the current Co-Directors devote numerous volunteer hours to. The programming for early 2018 is coming together and next year will also mark 10 years of FELTspace, so expect some big celebrations!

Q: Where can we find more of your work?

A: I am participating in some group shows coming up, including one at the Town Hall during SALA + FRAN Festival. Head to my website to see my work, and this Facebook page to check out team updates.

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“Three videos, presented side by side within the gallery demonstrate slippages and synced moments between scenes. Three generations of women interact, record and measure for a snug homemade suit.” – Homemade Bathers, 2017

Q: If someone was to make a film about your life, who would you get to play yourself?

A: I would probably just use it as a sneaky chance to meet an idol, but also perhaps for visual similarities? Tina Fey, or more specifically her Liz Lemon character.

Masya Zabidi

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