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Art Procurement Part One - A Real Test


We recently had the privilege of touring three Seattle artists' studios while hearing how they formed their distinctive practices. In a city full of artistic talent, objekts is connected to these three studios specifically through project art procurement. Each of these studios has been built by artists chasing their own curiosity.


We started in Jaq Chartier's white-walled, light-filled, eclectic studio. As soon as you enter the space, your eye is drawn to all the bold colors and shapes methodically lined up on canvases and metal. Jaq has set up a practice for herself where each piece of art is a test to answer the question: What will the materials do? Inspired in part by exposure to electrophoresis, she started testing inks for light fastness, bleed on different surfaces, and the chemical reaction of finishing spray paints on the inks.

Jaq incorporates time as one of her materials, allowing paintings to sit in her studio, partially covered, to compare one line of ink after a day in the light, 9 days, 131 days. Her fastidious notetaking shows how one olive ink transforms to light peach and a brown ink moves from coral to yellow - how time and light impact her work.

Jaq's artwork is defined by strict rules:

  1. It has to be a real test.

  2. Everything on the painting has to be there for a reason. Nothing gratuitous.


One challenge came from a show with paintings of complete tests showcasing a mixture of permanent and fugitive inks. She noted, "The show was anticlimactic because only I saw the change." It begged the next question: How will others be invited into the experiment? Dye sublimated aluminum came to the rescue, and she began photographing paintings after each day of light exposure in order to create permanent prints. The image below shows Jaq holding an original painting, which now appears completely white from the effects of time and light, while pointing to a permanent print made from the same painting earlier in the test.

Jaq showing an original painting and a photo copy


Here are a few of our favorite anecdotes from our conversation with Jaq about how she started out and where she's headed:

  • Painting with a Walter Foster seascape book during the 4th grade is at least partially responsible for Jaq's curiosity around color. The color wheel and description of complimentary colors "was like a magic button."

  • An installation created by Robert Irwin offered Jaq an early experience of resonance with a piece of art. "It goes right into you. That's what the painting was doing. That's what I want to be able to do."

  • To get a peek at Jaq's favorite color, you'll have to track down a delphinium. It's the unattainable nature of the almost-neon bridge between purple and blue that draws her in.

  • Small flex: Jaq's work is featured on the Foo Fighter's first album. This came to be after bonding with Dave Grohl over bowling and UFOs. Now Jaq is experimenting with a new "foo shape" in her artwork.

Find more from Jaq Chartier here:

Coming soon: Part two where we visit Sallyann Corn's fruitsuper studio.


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