by Marie-Christin Tripolt

 

Contemporary artist, Juniper Briggs, brings a fresh perspective to the art world through her soulful exploration of female strength and beauty. Her body of work celebrates women as we should see ourselves – bold, confident, and beautifully imperfect. Jute Fashion Magazine had some questions for the ambitious artist and she was happy to talk about her work, her inspiration, and her message of empowerment as reflected in her own journey of self-discovery.

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 What is your inspiration and what do you want to communicate through your work?

My work is a personal exploration of inner strength, self-discovery and empowerment through the simple subject matter of the female face and form.

As humans, each one of us is built, layer by layer, on the lessons we have gained throughout life. They are hard won but beautiful. I think of my paintings as an outward reflection of those lessons and the intertwined relationship between the body and soul.

I am fascinated by the juxtaposition between a calm outward stare and the wilderness of thought and emotion within. The clean confidence we present to the world versus the complexities we contain.

I also believe that we are all reflections of what we concentrate our energy towards. The idea that our thoughts become things is a simple but powerful notion that completely transformed my life. In that sense, I sometimes think of my paintings as affirmations for myself and for others. A reminder of the beauty and strength that we all have access to.

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Why did you choose to be part of the women’s movement?

My art comes from a very personal place. I felt lost for a long time in my early twenties and went through a great deal of turmoil and soul searching in my early thirties. Painting pulled me out of despair and into my own power.

I paint from my perspective as a woman and a mother of two daughters. My journey of taking ownership of my life and dreams, (as told through my work) seems to resonate with other women, who either aspire to, or have already done the same for themselves. The fact that my art is able to encourage others to step into their own strength is an unexpected but incredible blessing.

I’ve also gained so much from the circle of women in my life, including the artists and designers that I have met through my business, in person and online. As a young mother and a creative entrepreneur, I would not have been able to build on this dream or business without the incredibly supportive women who make up my core group of friends, clients, mentors, and peers. It is a community that I am deeply aware of and grateful for.

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Where did you learn your craft?

I’m a self-taught artist. I started seriously painting as a creative release after my second daughter was born. I needed something for myself and I turned to art. I’ve spoken to a lot of women who had a similar experience. There’s something about motherhood that seems to draw out that type of creative yearning. Being a young mother was equal parts exhausting and motivating for me. I learned to steal moments for myself in between feedings and naps. Studio time was a precious resource that I mined for all it was worth.

There was a lot of trial and error in the beginning, a lot of exploring and finding my voice. Sometimes it felt like I was going into battle with a brush and canvas. Painting has always been an intuitive process for me though. My mind is never quite so clear as it is when I’m working. It allows me to get out of my own way, which is a rare and beautiful thing.

As an artist, how hard is it to balance creativity and a sense for business so that you can actually live from your work?

I find the business side of things to be empowering. I’ve had to learn as I go but the fact that I’ve done it all on my own is an incredible feeling of accomplishment. I certainly hope to be able to delegate aspects of the business as I continue to grow. Painting is definitely where my heart is but I believe in what I do so the business becomes an extension of that.

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Who are artists you look up to?

Classical artists I look up to include Picasso, Frida Kahlo, Henri Matisse, Gustav Klimpt, Marc Chagall, Modigliani, Egon Schiele

 and many, many more… As far as contemporary artists, I’m completely enamored with Ashely Longshore’s hilarious, joyful paintings and her unapologetic entrepranurial spirit. Off the top of my head, I’m also loving the work of Ines Longevial, Tina Berning and Mia Oatly, Anne-Sophie Tschiegg, Hope Gangloff, and Alexandra Levasseur, just to name a few.

How would you describe your work?

I am a contemporary artist concentrating on abstract figurative paintings.

My work draws from the simplicity of folk art while grappling with the abstract nature of the human spirit.

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