top of page
Artist Statement - Timeless Threads Series

Multimedia Artworks, Variable Dimensions, Created 2017-present.

          As an artist I have become interested in how multiple connections are interwoven into my cultural identities and family histories.  For example, my dad’s artistic practices are largely shaped by his memories of the highly skilled basket-makers and beaders of our community, all while my artistic sensibility is greatly informed by his painterly creations.  I also take lots of inspiration from the sewing done by my late Irish grandmother, who used fabric and old clothing to create new clothing and quilts.

          In my artistic process, I selectively choose colors, designs, and materials like fabrics, canvas, yarn, thread, and paint, that speak to physical and spiritual narratives embedded throughout my familial histories.  When I am creating, I make constant negotiations between graceful, yet complex tensions between the threads, the fabrics, and the stretcher-frames or other support structures.  I value this duality because it allows me to present my Indigenous and non-Indigenous family histories, as beautiful and rich, yet sometimes scarred and lacking.  I further assign all my handsewn stitches as acts dedicated to healing.  When I create I hold space for others who could benefit from restorative energy, in a continuum of the intentions, skills, and practices of those who came before me.  My work references star blankets designs that are now common in many Nations throughout North America, to acknowledge the Indigenous reverence for the Star Nation and symbolic colors.  I also intentionally choose floral fabrics which I associate with Grandmother prints, to honor the presence of and connections to my late grandmothers.

         My quilted and painted artworks fully respect sewing as an artform, while commanding confident presences in galleries that contest Western art constructs.  While my works conversate with ancestral aesthetics and their relationalities, each mark and thread carries expressions unique to the now.  I remain passionately interested in further creative testimonies to ‘the timeless threads that connect us’. 

         My generous time designing, sewing, painting, and constructing these threaded works pays tribute to my late grandmothers’ presences, while opening up a vibrant space for the enjoyment and the introspection by all people.


Jill Janvier, 2018

bottom of page