The scenes that Jennifer Foran creates on wood slices and panels perfectly encapsulate everything we love about this little (upper left) corner that we call home.
With their rustic-meets-modern vibe and their quiet, perfectly balanced color palettes, her trees, mountains and moonscapes are like dreamy windows, looking out onto our favorite places.
Jennifer's work is included in our Wood Group Show, a collection of featured artists that will run through July 10th. The entire collection of works debuts during West Seattle Art Walk on Thursday, June 9th from 5-8p with select pieces available online.
How would you describe what you make?
I begin exploring the natural elements of the wood and begin to incorporate it into my work. I begin by drawing onto the surface using a wood burning tool. After I have created the image of a tree or landscape I add stain to enhance the grain of the wood. Rather than paint, I mostly use water based wood stain for its translucent qualities. The stain provides color but allows the wood grain to remain visible. Incorporating the wood grain and knots make each piece unique.My work is inspired from the nature that surrounds me in the Portland city parks, mountains and coastline of the Pacific Northwest.
What drew you to this medium and style of work?
My process began by reproducing images of trees on reclaimed cabinet doors. I would spend hours sanding multiple layers of paint off of each cabinet in an attempt to reach the natural wood. I would then create an image of a tree with acrylic paint. Eventually, I felt that painting on wood was not enough, the natural wood needed to be exposed. My work evolved as I began to explore the individual parts of the tree and the wood. I further developed my process by combining wood burning, painting and printmaking.
Can you tell us about your favorite piece in the current collection?
My favorite piece in the current collection is Pink Moon. My Moon Series captures the beautiful nature that surrounds us and places it in the spotlight of the moon.
If you could collaborate with anyone (living or not), who would it be and why?
Andy Goldsworthy. I am intrigued by his process and the themes in his work: renewal, time, life, death and the relationship with time and its connection between living things.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
Never turn down an opportunity.
Can you describe your favorite part of the process in your work?
My favorite part of my process is finding the tree and the landscape in the wood grain.
When you are in the studio, what are you listening to?
El VY, The National, Billie Eilish, The Frames, Corrina Repp, The Pixies, John Prine and Talking to Teens Podcast.
What is your most treasured handmade possession?
My Great Grandfather’s cowbells from Switzerland.