Location: Springfield, Missouri
Describe your featured work:
One of the bodies of work I am currently focusing on is titled Lov(ed). This is a photo of it’s installation at Steckline Gallery in Wichita, KS. It is meaningful to see the series as a whole, because seeing it together the work is much more impactful than each individual piece. This series is about who God loves, and how he shows his love to the world through His people. Installed together, they create a community that surrounds the viewer, and more fully illustrates the love of God to His people.
Today’s society has many pictures of “love.” Be it fairytale romance, social media popularity, or physical beauty, mainstream society shows us an unattainable definition of who is loved and how love feels. The true definition of love is the love that God has for his people. No matter your appearance, socioeconomic status, race, age, religion; God loves you. As an expression of this love, He not only sent Christ to die for you, but he also sent His church to show His love to others. Through Him, because of Him, we are to love, and love well.
These people represent God’s people. These faces are His face. Their beauty isn’t held in their outward appearance, it is in the love that God has for them, and shows through them. These are His people. They are loved. And because of God’s love for them, they are His love to the world.
My work explores aspects of Christian spirituality and worship through simple figurative compositions, mixed media collage, and juxtaposition of diverse images. I delve into questions such as how we communicate with God, how people daily act out their faith, and what it is to be living in an utterly broken world. Reoccurring themes in my work are the nature of divinity and its presence in our everyday, imperfect lives; the temporary nature of man as contrasted to the permanent nature of his soul; and the relationship that man has with God, and God with man, and the manner in which that relationship is executed.
My primary medium is acrylic, though I also work in encaustic and mixed media drawing. I use each material with intentionality, giving thought to both the inherent qualities suggested through art historical reference, and the visual weight and texture each material adds to a piece.
What are you working on now?
I have a tendency to need to work on very disparate types of work simultaneously; splitting my focus between several series helps me stay engaged in the work and not let it become routine. The two series I have been working on the most recently are a series of acrylic portraits that speak to the love of God and how it is revealed through his people, and a series of small mixed media pieces that are contemplations on the Word of God made manifest. That being said, currently my life is in a transition period; we are in the process of moving and finding a new job, and are currently living in the space between here and there, so finding a time and space to work has been difficult. Having a creative space and a routine to keep myself engaged while in a period of upheaval has been a challenge.
Why do you belong to CIVA?
CIVA is a community like no other for me. In CIVA I find a place where I can talk deeply about art and deeply about faith at the same time. Having these connections both happen in the same space is a rare treat. The conferences I have attended have been inspiring and life-giving, and I have really enjoyed all of the new online connection opportunities that have happened in the last year. I have moved around a lot as an adult, and don’t often have a robust community of artists, especially artists of faith, where I live, so being able to connect with other artists across the country on a regular basis through Maker to Maker and Heart to Heart has been amazing.
Jennie Kimbrough received her B.F.A. in 2004 from Missouri State University, and attended Wichita State University for graduate studies from 2005-2006. Her studio practice focuses on painting, while occasionally venturing into installation work. Her work has been featured in solo and group shows in Houston, TX and the surrounding area, as well as Grand Rapids, MI, Elk Rapids, MI, Richmond, VA, Philadelphia, PA, Wichita, KS, Springfield, MO, Los Angeles, CA, Austin, TX, along with many other cities. She has work in many private collections, as well as the collection of UTMB Galveston Hospital.