Refraction explores the dialogue between figure and object that is constantly evolving through moments of growth and transition. Figures painted inside domestic glass vessels create distortion in color and form, heightening a sense of containment. The fragmented nature of the image, through obfuscation, creates a distortion of understanding. Domestic containers become a lens for viewing the feminine, often distorting, fracturing, and manipulating the form, while also obscuring the identity of the individual. The duality of the figure—simultaneously assembling and dissipating within the painting—mirrors moments in life when we come to terms with our evolving self.
Jennifer Vess received her B.F.A. in Painting from the University of Georgia in 2017 and her M.F.A. in Painting from the University of Iowa in 2020. Her work shifts across disciplines and has been included in both regional and national juried exhibitions. She is passionate about the arts in education for all ages and abilities. Jennifer’s experience includes teaching art at the collegiate level and at the Lyndon House Arts Foundation, as well as holding the position of Art Director at Zoo Atlanta Summer Safari Camp. She was selected for the Chulitna Artist in Residence Program in Alaska for the summer of 2017. She has been invited as a guest juror for an art fair and has presented work at universities and national conferences. In 2019, Jennifer received the Mildred Pelzer Lynch Fellowship, and in 2020 she received the OVPR Research Grant. She lives and works in Eastern Iowa.