Jennifer Libby Fay is an artist living in Fayetteville, Arkansas.
An accomplished hand-weaver and fiber artist, she now focuses on textile surface design using multiple dying techniques, embellishment, and fabric manipulation.
Jennifer and I met online while working on our mutual blogs.
I instantly fell in love with Jen’s art work.
Jennifer, you mention that your work is about transformation, imagination and symbol. I just love this sentence. Could you be more specific about this? I would love to know exactly what you are telling us.
- When I am making my art it is a spiritual and intuitive experience. I am looking for transformation—both for me and for the viewer. When all is going well, I able able to work in a state of wonder so that I can stay open to the moment. The symbols come from my imagination—from conscious and unconscious places.
Your show in March called “Reconciliation” “when knowledge comes and life changes” That sentence has a powerful meaning to me for many reasons. One of the things you mention is that Reconciliation is a life long journey and that you created this work with that journey in mind? What is this Journey?
- When creating the pieces for my solo show I held the thought of Reconciliation in my mind. What does it mean to me today? I would ask. We all know that everyone has significant challenges to face in life. Sometimes these challenges come from happy things, like getting married, or having a baby. Other times they arise from difficult circumstances, such as a diagnosis, or the loss of a loved one. He gets down on one knee, she takes the pregnancy test, the police officer arrives at the door…there is a moment when knowledge comes and our life changes—in that moment we have a choice. A choice that will shape our journey forever after—we can embrace the change or deny it. I believe if we can, being very gentle with ourselves, choose the path of embracing, of acknowledging, reality—not the way we wish things were—then reconciliation will begin. We can look into the future and imagine the best, most loving outcome of the situation—and we can keep on imagining it on the days of hard work and difficulty that may follow.
What is the best thing about being an artist?
- For me the best thing about being an artist is getting to make art, experiment and learn something new everyday. That doesn’t mean it’s always easy. I have periods of doubt and fear. The ways I have found to combat these feelings are reading books like The Artist’s Way, by Julia Cameron, or Creative License, by Danny Gregory. I read Art & Fear by David Bayles and Ted Orland at least once every year. I do what the books say, I do the exercises, I start over again…baby steps. I also talk to other artists, get plenty of exercise and sleep and when all else fails (why it takes me so long to get to this point, I will never know) I decide they are just thoughts and I ignore them.
What is the negative side of being an artist, is there a negative side?
- The most difficult part of being an artist is that most people don’t understand it is a real job. But I am finding that the more I take the business side of it seriously the more people respond in kind. I have had my studio and gallery representation at the Fayetteville Underground for a year now and it has been a fantastic experience. I have won awards, received commissions, and best of all, collectors from all over the country have chosen my work to be a part of their homes. I am truly grateful.
Thank you Jennifer for participating in this interview.
More links to find Jennifer:
Fayetteville Underground: http://fayettevilleunderground.blogspot.com