Jen Brown (they/them) is an artist in Philadelphia. Jen has been in Philadelphia, in Fishtown, since graduating college in Baltimore (MICA) in 2009. Jen has held lots of different jobs, and appreciates how new experiences, skills, and resources can expand your world and also your art practice. Jen has been fortunate to connect with most of their jobs, and in a similar way, creates art in a lot of different ways in their life. Primarily an oil painter, Jen is also a fibers artist, photographer, sculptor, community organizer, gardener, curator, poet, and more. Jen currently works for pay at Philadelphia Parks and Rec managing a Compost Program. Jen cares deeply for their community, and the environment, the ecosystem, the history of the land they are grateful to live on. Jen is currently on the board of the Emerald Street Community Farm as well as Philly Tree People; helping to share knowledge and expand care toward each other and our planet helps Jen to feel hopeful for the future, and at least for the present. Jen takes great joy in connecting people with resources.
I am a multidisciplinary artist who seeks to ask and answer questions through the acts of making and moving through the world. The works I make embody snapshots of the world I see with joy, or curiosity, or something that captivates me, and so I need to do something with that image or idea. As a human, I experience highs and lows. When I’m low, I can’t make art. But even when I’m feeling wonderful, there’s often a sadness, a mourning that pervades my work. I often depict beauty in sadness, and vice versa, and the need for the balance of such things. My work absorbs and contains moments as a personal placemarker. The act of documentation feels at once futile and vital; the act of creating is narcissistic, luxurious, wasteful; empowering, joyful. Creativity, critical thinking and collaboration all both challenge and reward. Integrating community, homemaking, and paid work into social practice, I appreciate the balance of all things within perpetuity.