Showcasing the Arts

Sept./Oct. 2015 Featured Artist:
Jenny Zeller


Jenny Zeller prepares one of her photo encaustic 
    images at her Louisville studio.
Jenny Zeller prepares one of her photo encaustic images at her Louisville studio.
I am a photographer whose heart lies in the process beyond the click of the shutter. This statement was true long before the days of digital technology’s consumption of the photography market. Never one to identify as a conventional photographer, I have always found it more interesting to use an image as a starting point and incorporate experimental practices of processing and developing.

Early in my photographic explorations, I bleached and toned prints, played with pinhole cameras, experimented with 19th century processes such as Van Dyke brown, cyanotypes and gum dichromates, and pushed boundaries when working with Polaroid lifts and transfers. As digital photography became more prevalent, traditional methods of developing and printing became more difficult to accomplish at a local level. Widespread use of digital photography changed my goals for the medium. The challenge became retaining a deliberate, hands-on approach in processing digital imagery.

My focus shifted from experimental darkroom processing to incorporating mixed media and digital printmaking in creating one-of-a-kind imagery. I now capture and edit digitally before printing and layering those images with encaustic wax, oil pastels and/or photo transfers. In addition, I am currently exploring the world of digital transfer techniques that emulate old school alternative processes and have started printing my work onto a variety of surfaces including wood, metal, paper and fabrics.

My process intimately connects and physically engages me with the material used to create the works, keeping my practice authentic and fresh. The more I experiment with process, the wider the possibilities become of what a photograph can be.

Notable artistic mentions to date include a 2001 South Florida Cultural Consortium Award, a Rodel Foundation Residency at NISDA in 2006 and a 15-year retrospective exhibition at The Studios of Key West in 2011. In 2014, I was awarded an Al Smith Individual Artist Fellowship from the Kentucky Arts Council and from 2013-2015, I proudly held the position of photographer, artist-in-residence, at St. Francis School in downtown Louisville.

Jenny Zeller
Louisville, Ky.

Telephone: 305-849-0408


Page last updated: June 8, 2016
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