JASMIN FOOKES

she/her/hers

I am an interdisciplinary artist residing on Treaty 6 territory in Saskatoon Saskatchewan Canada.

My intuition is the catalyst for the diverse assortment of materials I collect and organize trusting that a deeper camaraderie will emerge over time. I am energized by natural materials such as bygone blossoms and foliage, seed pods, and fallen nests spotted in urban green spaces by virtue of chance encounters. Additionally, I have amassed a collection of commonly undervalued, mass-produced objects reminiscent of my own everyday experiences, and wonderings such as antiquated nails, springs, bottle openers, and glass bottles.

Prior to 2019 I was primarily interested in printmaking however materials in the printmaking lab readied for removal became my central focus – the end of their intended purpose was the beginning of their life for me. Ink saturated tarlatan, broken aluminum screen printing frames, and mylar templates ultimately entered a cycle of transformation as I began altering their forms creating new objects or configurations. This signalled the transition from being a printmaker working with a method that produced a "series" to an artist working with collections.

This ritual of care calls attention to histories of use, consumer culture, and values surrounding collecting, remembering, and how we attend to and construct personal narratives. At the heart of my accumulated artifacts and tokens is the influence of my grandmothers - remaining immediate after their human existence. Juxtaposing these two women as “the Country Mouse” and the City Mouse,” the symbolic and emblematic cousins from Aesop’s Fable, has long been an amusing anecdote I attribute to my ability to find inspiration in both urban and rural Saskatchewan outdoor environments.

I am interested in the ways contemporary artists borrow from and recontextualize the historical cabinets of curiosity in their practice. I marry this with a reimagining of methodologies, documentation, and taxonomies commonly associated with the curatorial care of biological collections in entomology, taxidermy, and the herbarium. I repurpose materials to construct unusual specimen trays and storage enclosures to specifically suit each enigmatic collection. These transformations ennoble the materials turning them into something greater than the sum of their parts.

 

I wish to cultivate a sense of wonder through the installation of these collections and excite new ideations by shifting the commonly accepted contexts a viewer may have. What is it that makes one thing ordinary and another extraordinary? Fusing collections of natural materials with found objects revitalises in me a sense of wonder for the world we live in, its beauty, fragility, and complexity and the urgency of caring for it.

CV

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