We’re very excited to introduce a new column here on the site called “Attributes.” When we featured the work of Jelmar Geerstma last month, we fell in love with his idea to create portraits of people through the objects they encounter in their work and life. We strongly believe in the narrative value of objects, and what better story for them to tell than the one of you?
With that in mind, we’re kicking off the series with a portrait in objects (here on in referred to as a PIO) of artist and designer Jill Bliss. Jill’s line of paper and fabric goods inspired by nature have gained a large following over the years. As an owner of six of her Native Herbs journals, filled to the brim with notes and scribblings, I can personally attest to the beauty of her intricately detailed illustrations.
The image above is Jill’s PIO, taken in her studio in Portland, Oregon, on a sunny weekend afternoon. Here are Jill’s own words about her attributes:
“The objects depicted here are all objects in my studio that have special significance for one reason or another. Favorite books, pens, handmade objects given to me by friends, natural and cultural objects collected during my travels—Japan, Argentina, New York, Chicago, Australia, England, the Netherlands, Los Angeles, and all along the West Coast seashore.
A leaf from my favorite studio plant, on long-term loan from a friend who went back east for school but swears she’ll come back to Portland. The polar bear art piece made by myself and Saelee Oh pointed the way towards my Anima art series. A beautiful tien gulden note from the Netherlands, my mom’s birthplace, before they converted to the ugly euro. A custom woodcut piece by Sighn that hangs above the door as a constant reminder of the intent of all my work.”