“Home” (2021); watercolor, magazine images, thread on paper; 16”x12”

This week we welcome Kathleen Jansyn, a visual artist with a background in theatrical design, primarily costumes.  She earned an MFA in theater design from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and currently works on Broadway. Her parallel and equally active art practice leverages her theatrical sensibilities in her assemblages, sculptures, and installations.

“We don’t have enough buses, (there would be too many bodies)” (2021); vintage frame, newspaper photo, magazine images, beads, string; 12” x 18”, photo: Todd Heisler, NYTimes

“My work is a rearrangement of familiar and common materials into something that surprises or confuses us into looking at life differently. Everything in life is made from where and what we are, where and what we were,” she writes.

“Vulnerability” (2021); watercolor, magazine images on paper; 15” x 11”

“I work in sculpture, collage and installation. My work includes found objects and repurposed materials-  this is a core value.  In life we gather and then build upon what was before, both culturally and personally.  We recombine what we already have to build the future.  I work with layering, combining, reusing what has always been there — a rearrangement of ordinary things into something that surprises us into seeing anew.

“Speak greatness into you” (2020): acrylic, metal leaf, used advertising posters, string, beads, found objects on canvas: 24” x 18”

Although we need rules and guidance, wise human behavior cannot be enforced from the outside. It has to be the individual’s choice, a need. Art is one way to awaken this need- giving a glimpse that there is something that is beyond common understanding.  Art shows people that things can be rearranged.  Things can be changed without destroying what is there, or the past.  Things can be better with what we already have.

“Begin where you are” (2022); watercolor, magazine images on paper; 17” x 12”

If we look, we can see other ways of doing things — but we have to look.”

See more of Jansyn’s work on her website and Instagram.

Nitin is a visual designer, gallery artist, and community arts activist. Past desk-oriented posts include: PBS, Digitas, K12, Inc., Fox News, The Wall Street Journal and Sesame Workshop International....

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