Friday, April 5, 2019

April 2019 Meet Our Artists: Jane Jerardi

Our Members, Fiscally Sponsored Artists, and other program participants represent a wide range of career stages and disciplines. We love them - and, as fellow artists, we're always inspired by them. With this monthly feature, we hope you'll feel the same way!

Name: Jane Jerardi

What do you do?

Dance, Performance, Video, and Installation Artist

What inspires you?
The creative process. And seeing other artists’ work. Seeing artists begin and continue and persevere through the questions of their own work never ceases to amaze me.

What are you proud of?

That we re-started The Field in Chicago. We have 18 people in our current Fieldwork group here! Pretty exciting.

What are your goals?
To keep creating interesting art and to support fellow artists in the process.

Jane Jerardi and Dao Nguyen's Six Acts of Witness (2015) participatory event. Photo by Slaveya Minkova

Any advice for fellow artists?
I find making is a lot about getting out of the way. Convincing the parts of you that want to procrastinate and the part that thinks your ideas aren’t very good – to tell them to just slowly step back. And, you keep going despite them, while they’re there waiting in the background.

Then once you have something – that’s usually kind of terrible – you at least have something which is certainly better than nothing. And then you start to negotiate with it and then get weirdly into it and wonder about it and expand it, change it, or manipulate it and multiply it, or teach it to a friend, and get them to change it into something better. And then, you start having strong opinions about it – that it needs to be a certain way and you’re not really sure why but you’re fairly convinced of it.

And then, the project has somehow become bigger than you and you’re just following its lead. And you’re still not sure if you’re worthy – or your ideas are any good, but you do it anyway for some reason.

And despite it all – you realize that what’s beautiful about this is that you can make something without really much of anything at all. There are dances waiting to be made, photos waiting to be taken with your phone, your dollar-store notebook waiting to be written in, music waiting to inspire. Your art is as worthy as anyone else’s and we certainly need it.

(Excerpted from Jane’s recent essay about studio practice, “on beginnings,” published by The Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago. Go read the full piece! We love it!)

Jane Jerardi and Dao Nguyen's Six Acts of Witness (2015) interview photo by Slaveya Minkova

How does The Field help you?
The concrete nature of the (Fieldwork) process really aids so many different kinds of artists, no matter what stage their project or work might be at. It never fails to surprise me how often different artists connect to it.

Additional Viewing:
excerpts from Nocturne

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