I’ve known the artist Jill Powers and have admired her work for several years, but lucky for me, I moved to her state (Colorado) and she came for a studio visit (my first!) when she was in the Vail Valley over the holidays. We had a lovely couple of hours chatting about artwork, life, and Jill’s show which just opened in Longmont.
Plants & Insects in a Time of Change is on view at The Firehouse Art Center through February 3. I wish I could have attended the opening, which featured a live motion piece by the Contemplative Dance Collective. Check out how the dancers were masked,
and how they interacted with Jill’s work.
Jill’s work looks at various issues surrounding insects and climate change, including one phenomenon here in Colorado: the tremendous devastation wrought by the pine-beetle epidemic in Colorado’s forests, an epidemic made more severe by drought and the insect’s increased reproductive cycle in response to climate change.
Jill has spent years honing her process of working with Japanese bark fibers, like kozo. When we were visiting, she pulled out a ziplock full of insect parts, and at first I thought they were real.
Jill will be giving an artist’s talk on Saturday, January 19th at 7pm in the gallery, when she will also be screening six short films – all about insects. It will be a mix of films about Colorado’s forests, the mountain pine bark beetles, and some films about interesting things contemporary artists are doing with insects.
I’m looking forward to visiting Jill’s studio in Boulder soon, where I’ll be amongst plants, tree pulps, seeds and other fruits of nature in some stage of being turned into art. I’ll write more about her work after I do.