Artist: Kristi Tristao Jensen
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Werby Gallery
Website: In Progress
Kristi Tristao Jensen is an artist raised in the L.A. area of Venice Beach. Her interest in art was sparked when she was often interested in molding things with clay and draw. Prior to attending CSULB, she had worked with a lot of Fiber arts. She was in the sculptural department but she felt as if it was too conceptual for her–she wanted to make and mold things. A friend had recommended her to try out metals, and she immediately picked up skills to work with these metals sparking her new interest. She says she easily acquired these skills to working with metals because it was something that allowed her to shape and mold things hands-on which she enjoyed the most. Lineage also contains several unique pieces of jewelry Kristi had sculpted. She explains that she has not put into full thought of creating her own jewelry line due to the fact that she creates these pieces to be quite abstract so depending on individual preference could be a hit or miss.
Each individual piece within Lineage was made from a combination of metals. Kristi speaks of how she learned to fold these metals to manipulate them into a certain form. She uses fold forming to bend the metal into different shapes and at different angles. She also shows her interest in molding which can be seen in her piece “Urchins.” A lot of detail can be seen in the metal up close–the rough surfaces, curves, where the metal was bent, etc.
To Kristi, Lineage was meant to showcase the skills close friends and family have taught her the things she knows now and will intend to learn later on in her life. Kristi explains her interest in knowing how things are made and how they can unfold and be put put back together. She enjoys the process of dissecting something and recreating it on her own based on her own observations. She goes on to say that the act of creating the things she wants for herself are a reflection of her interests in technique, experimentation, and failure in order to succeed in creating new versions of particular things that catch her eye. She goes on to explain how her husband is an inspiration to her as well. She explains his go-getter personality really taught her to explore her creativity and desire to learn more. She says he has encouraged her to always seek out solutions to things she does not know. Things like these have maintained her desire to be always continuously learning something new from the people and things she encounters every day.
I really enjoyed Lineage. It was a very simple exhibit overall, but what fascinated me was observing the lines and shapes of the metal Kristi seems to have worked with. I greatly admire her willingness to always be learning something new about ourselves and about the world around us and the things we often come into contact with every day. It was interesting to see how the metal was bent to form abstract shapes and molds. I admire Kristi’s intent of always wanting to know how something was made from things like food to clothing to every day items we use but never stop to think about how all these things came about. I, too, would often observe things I showed interest in and wondered what it took to get into my hands, where was it made, was it made by machine or hands from people just like ourselves, etc. Overall, I really enjoyed the exhibit and hope to see more of Kristi’s work in the future.