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|Mimi Jensen is fascinated by the way things look. She translates that attentiveness into art by painting in a meticulously composed and refined manner. Jensen's widely collected work ranges from imaginary realism to the still life. Each piece begins when some simple detail—the shadow on a drawn window shade, an elegant black and white Balinese fabric—catches her eye. Jensen's intent in painting it is to entice the viewer to linger long enough to see and contemplate what otherwise might be overlooked. Although her settings evidence a human presence, no one is there at the captured moment. It's up to the viewer to supply a narrative.|
But Jensen also harbors a lifelong love of language, so she enjoys nudging that narrative with thoughtfully chosen titles for her work. Many evoke whimsy ('Hot') or wit ('Pair' and 'Family Reunion'). Some derive from personal experience — 'Homage' identifies a favorite New York café scene she happened to be painting at the time of 9/11. Occasionally, a title occurs to her first ('Gin is from Juniper'), and the portrayal follows its lead.
When she finds a particularly inviting subject or concept, Jensen stays with it, working in series ('City Interior' or 'Upstairs Downtown') until some new detail attracts her attention.
In her STILL LIFE work, Mimi Jensen presents an often playful mix of everyday objects. With a photographer's eye for composition, she chooses things that intrigue or please or even annoy her. Jensen then carefully arranges the sometimes quirky ensemble, which she paints life-size from an orthographic perspective. She hopes the viewer will notice each element's texture and color and shape, and examine the interplay of the whole. The allure of the still life revived in 2003, when an invigorating workshop experience inspired her to paint in a realistic style she'd never before considered.
In her INTERIORS, Mimi Jensen paints edges, shadows, and glimpses that suggest only a hint of what's beyond. Sparked by an object observed, often one touched by an intricate play of light and shadow, Jensen takes that inspiration and builds an imagined environment around it. By incorporating walls and windows into her work, or doors and floors, she segments the elements into a calm and harmonious construction. Jensen paints what she wants you to see. But she also urges the viewer to pause and consider what has not been emphasized or has been left out. As she herself does, Jensen wants the viewer to wonder what's around that corner.
Chance and imagination dominate Mimi Jensen's HORIZONS work. This imagined realism adds an unexpected sensuousness and compelling beauty to familiar objects. The truths in her paintings draw from any number of sources—relationships, voyages, balance. Both intrusion and a touch of romance might also find their way onto the canvas. These richly realized spaces might welcome pears or bridges or balls. One scene embellishes reality, another interprets the public domain through an abandoned arrangement of chairs. Whatever her theme, Jensen's careful use of scale and color seduces the viewer into entering unknown terrain.
San Francisco, CA
visit artist's website:www.mimijensen.com/pages/home.phtml