Connect
To Top

Check out Jessica Straus’s Artwork

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jessica Straus.

Jessica, we’d love to hear your story and how you got to where you are today both personally and as an artist.
I grew up on the seacoast of New Hampshire, with the tide literally rising onto our lawn. My wilderness-loving, adventurous parents had chosen New Hampshire to be close to mountains and ocean. They raised us kids with a heavy regimen of weekly hiking and daily swimming.

They also inculcated in us a love of the world beyond our borders as we traveled to keep in touch with my mother’s French family who she had left behind when she departed France after WWII to marry my American father. My mother was a talented Sunday painter who encouraged me work beside her, not only with paintbrushes but with various craft materials. Her father had been a superb woodcarver who created utilitarian, ingenious, and artistic marvels for his family. Perhaps that was why my mother was casual about letting me wield a knife at an early age when I started to teach myself how to whittle.

We’d love to hear more about your art. What do you do you do and why and what do you hope others will take away from your work?
While I have art school training that informs my aesthetics, I rely on self-taught wood working techniques in my sculpture. In my work I opt to hand carve the elements, no matter how labor intensive the work and no matter whether I could buy similar manufactured forms. The fact that the forms are brought into existence chip by chip imbues the objects with soul, a trait that is sadly lacking in today’s world of over abundant, cheap, plastic manufacture.

I am drawn to narrative and metaphor in my work. I play with unexpected juxtapositions between recognizable and enigmatic forms. Inventiveness, humor and narrative are key elements of my sculpture.

Do current events, local or global, affect your work and what you are focused on?
It is hard not to be deeply affected by our political climate. While I have always been attracted to humor in my work, I have found myself sliding more precipitously into black humor with visions of a post-apocalyptic world. My work has taken on concerns of diminishing natural resources and threatened relations even among our staunchest allies.

Do you have any events or exhibitions coming up? Where would one go to see more of your work? How can people support you and your artwork?
I will have a solo show in December 2018 at Boston Sculptors Gallery where I regularly exhibit my work. I will also be participating in an exhibition entitled “It’s Only a Game” at the Bristol Art Museum in the fall. I have my studio at the Brick bottom Artists Building in Somerville which folks can visit at Open Studios in November or by getting in touch with me for a studio visit.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Photo credits: Dean Powell and Bill Kipp

Getting in touch: BostonVoyager is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

2 Comments

  1. Julia Shepley

    August 4, 2018 at 6:28 pm

    Wonderful Interview!

  2. Meredyth Hyatt Moses

    August 5, 2018 at 11:40 am

    Jessica Strauss is a dedicated very talented artist. She was also an amazing art teacher for many years at Concord Academy while raising her two children and making her outstanding and thought provoking sculpture.
    Her work is in many important collections. It was my pleasure to represent her for many years at Clark Gallery.
    She is a treasured friend.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More in

  • The Trailblazers: Rewriting the Narrative

    The editorial team has a special attachment to our new series, The Trailblazers: Rewriting the Narrative, because so many of us...

    Local StoriesNovember 15, 2018
  • Boston’s Most Inspiring Stories

    Every neighborhood in the Greater Boston area has its own vibe, style, culture and history, but what consistently amazes us is...

    Local StoriesNovember 15, 2018
  • BostonVoyager FAQs

    We’ve prepared this FAQ about BostonVoyager (run by Voyage Group of Magazines, LLC) (“Voyage”) in an effort to ensure that anyone...

    Local StoriesSeptember 23, 2018
  • The Influencers

    The BostonVoyager owes a huge debt to the incredible local community of influencers – from fashion bloggers to foodies – who...

    Local StoriesSeptember 19, 2018
  • #BostonCreatives: the local artists who inspire us

    Through a mix of mediums, formats and perspectives local artists illuminate the unknown, color the previously black-and-white and add depth to...

    Local StoriesSeptember 18, 2018
  • Makeover Monday’s: local beauty inspo that blew us away

    New week, new look.  Here’s some inspiration from some of Boston’s most gifted beauty professionals. 👰🏼💫 A post shared by Makeupjunkybyhilda...

    Local StoriesSeptember 17, 2018
  • The Thought-Provokers: Celebrating Artists & Creatives

    Boston has always had an artistic soul.  The culture and heritage of our city, like most great cities, owes a tremendous...

    Local StoriesSeptember 17, 2018
  • An Artistic Voyage: exploring local creative and artistic works

    Raw, unfiltered creative expression – from stories and photographs to illustrations and paintings – is at the heart of the BostonVoyager. ...

    Local StoriesSeptember 14, 2018
  • Flashes & Strokes: a Tale of Two Mediums

    The digital and traditional arts are thriving in Boston. From newer, technology based media like photography and digital art to more...

    Local StoriesSeptember 13, 2018