Artist Jeanne Jaffe

One of the best experiences on this residency is that I have made really good friends. Jeanne is an artist from Philadelphia and a Professor of Sculpture at The University of the Arts of Philadelphia that was also selected for the Mino Paper Art Residency.

Japan is toned by neutral colors and soft spoken people and Jeanne become the dash of bright and provided the comfortable loudness that was sometimes so needed. Our constant coffee breaks provided us time to discuss the woes and joys of the art world and she has taught me a lot. In a sense Jeanne has become a mentor to me. One of the most important things that she has taught me is to never stop learning, and that you have to built and improve your character through making your art and you do that by constantly questioning society and yourself.

Her sculptures are organic growths that ebbs and swells into pinks and flesh color. Her work has a naivete or innocence that is pleasant but at the same time you are confronted with a dark unease. Throbbing veins and nerves creep their way into the object. This a similar theme I have been touching on in my own work – a fun macabre. See more of her sculptures on her website here.

Doubling, resin, hair, metal, 2004-05

We became partners in crime that was dropped in middle of the country in Japan. Together we had to feel our way trough a new culture that is so different than America. -I would now like to take this time to apologize to all our new friends in Japan that we might have offended by being unaware of the correct customs! -It is at the end of our three month residency and we are getting ready for our exhibition. This residency in this beautiful country with its hospitable people, who I came to love, was such a positive experience  and I know Jeanne feels the same.

In Nagoya, Japan

About Marais

Anja Marais is an artist with interdisciplinary projects consisting of sculpture, photography, installation and film that present the idea of the perpetual outlander. For more information visit
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