Jen Chilstrom is an artist and arts advocate who works in a variety of media. She is the co-founder of Showroom, a co-working retail space that spotlights the Twin Cities maker and artist community with a focus on diverse and underrepresented communities. She co-owns/designs the local clothing brand Kindred Folk and loves hand dyeing and painting their textiles. Her works have always focused on reinventing materials or ‘upcycling’ and contain elements of collage. She often paints on found and/or natural objects. In her youth it was a way to rediscover the world around her, as an educator, a vital tool for teaching young artists in poverty.
I draw inspiration from the natural world around me and explore my creative voice through direct service to my community. My ambition as a multi-media visual artist is to inform, enrich, connect, and employ the diverse communities I collaborate with and serve. It is important to me that my artwork contain certain elements, though it may not always be apparent: the reuse and recycling of found objects and supplies, the creation/use of handmade pigments and natural dyes. The goal for my art, youth mentoring, and community service is to create safe spaces for living cultures to create and discover their own individual authentic voice and gifts. I explore and utilize many mediums including painting, photography and fiber arts.
"You are a stranger to yourself. Think of yourself like an immense world for exploring." A.J.