At the beginning of the month, I posted a few photos I took at the Oakland Art Murmur. Jennie Ottinger’s show, Due By: Book show by Jennie Ottinger, at the Johansson Projects (JP) Art Gallery was my introduction to her work. Since JP is one of my favorite galleries in the Easy Bay, I usually prolong my visit and make multiple trips back to the space during the Art Murmur. Due By was one of those shows I couldn’t get enough of. I found it rather difficult to leave. As you can see from the photo, patrons were allowed to open the books. Interestingly enough, there were no signs or persons encouraging or discouraging the participation but it just made sense. What do you do when you see a book? You open it. Whether or not it has pretty pictures, that’s the nature of book – to be opened. Then, to illuminate or share a story. Jennie Ottinger, certainly, did just that with her work.
I wanted to take some time to write and let you know that I’ve got something in the works regarding Ms. Ottinger’s work and art practice. Her witty and clever take on literature classics is not only an innovative approach at engagement with the viewer, it is a meshing of many art practices into one that is worth the inquiry and the discovery (if you are new to her work). I’ll explain later…I promise.
First impression: Clever, witty, fantastic and engaging story-teller, well read (literally), prolific, lover of words and language
Lasting impression: Worth the time but wondering where she will go next…I’m hoping to find out!