Jessica R Henderson
Jessica Henderson is an artist, freelance designer and Assistant Professor of Design at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota. She attended Bethel University for her B.A. in Studio Art and completed her M.F.A with emphases in 2D mixed media, print and bookmaking from Minneapolis College of Art and Design. Jessica has exhibited work at Burnet Gallery, SooVAC, Minneapolis College of Art and Design and the Soap Factory. She currently lives in St. Paul with her husband, twin baby boys, and dog.
About the Work
For the past several years I have been making art that questions how human experiences and understanding of being—being “in time” and “in space”—are influenced and affected by living increasingly virtual lives. We build self-awareness by seeing our reflection in the world and the impressions that we leave on it.
As our involvement in virtual or digitally mediated environments grows, becoming less physical, less rooted in one time, one place, and with tangible objects, how does awareness of our own existence change? How does the act of self-reflection change? If our impressions on the world and each other become less concrete, then do we become less human or less aware of our humanity? These questions ultimately relate to a core human desire: to be seen, to feel present, and to feel valued with a voice in the world.
Many of my two-dimensional objects and artist’s books utilize pages or layers to reference fragmentation or simultaneity, which are major discordant components of digital life. Other projects group together large collections of often mysteriously related digital images and ask viewers what sense can be made of the excessive and automated archives that track our digital existences and intersect with our daily lives. I invite viewers to question how the images are associated and to consider the authority of the technology that has established, facilitated, and reinforced these connections.
This issue of understanding “being” in a digital era extends through a variety of my projects, from artist’s books to screen prints and video installations; all interpret found objects through carefully structured digital systems that draw attention to technical mediation and abstraction. As a first-generation “digital native” who has spent half of my life firmly rooted in both realms, these topics and tensions are closely tied to who I am, who I have been, and who I will become.
- MFA (Print Paper Book) - Minneapolis College of Art and Design - 2011
- BA (Studio Art) - Bethel University - 2007
- Art(ists) On the Verge 7 - The Soap Factory, Minneapolis, MN - 2016
- Current Location - The Waiting Room, Minneapolis, MN - 2016
- Works on Paper / 7 Artists - Burnet Gallery, Minneapolis, MN - 2012
- Open Door Exhibition - Rosalux Gallery, Minneapolis, MN - 2012
- Midwest Multiples - Nemeth Art Center, Park Rapids, MN - 2012
- Accumulation: Past + Present - MCAD Whittier Gallery, Minneapolis, MN - 2011
- East + West - MCAD Whittier Gallery, Minneapolis, MN - 2011
- MCAD MFA Thesis Exhibition - The Soap Factory, Minneapolis, MN - 2011
- Masters of the Universe - Soo Visual Art Center, Minneapolis, MN - 2011
- Raw Data - Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Minneapolis, MN - 2010
- Get StARTed - Burnett Art Gallery, Chambers Hotel, Minneapolis, MN - 2010
- Master Blaster - Gallery 122, Minneapolis, MN - 2010
- Assistant Professor, Art Department - Bethel University, St. Paul, MN - 2011+
- Freelance Designer - St. Paul, MN - 2007+
- Graphic Designer - Northwestern College, St. Paul, MN, 2007-11
Fellowships, Awards & Honors
- Doing Good Well 2012 Leadership Development Gathering, Christians in the Visual Arts - 2012
- ThinkTank7 Emerging Educator’s Fellowship, Integrative Teaching International - 2012
MFA Trustees Scholarship, Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Minneapolis, MN - 2009-11