Originally appeared in the June 30th issue of the Klondike Sun.
SOVA Graduate Jessica Viens tells me about her upcoming show Crush or be Crushed: It’s a state not a question, her series of sculptures that represent the prototypical personifications of her romantic crushes. – Megan Graham
MG: What inspired you to do a show about crushes?
JV: Ah, muses. I’m critically obsessed with humans as muses. And crushes are the primary start, I reckon.
MG: By choosing the medium of sculpture and creating busts, are you attempting to immortalize your crushes?
JV: Not really. I mean, they don’t look like the people they are based on, at all. But the physicality of the objects is super important. I’m not gonna lie, I think I might have kissed one of them on the cheek. For good luck. I don’t want to let them have enough credit to me immortalized on their own their own; that’s why all are based on two or more people. No merciless heartbreak should be allowed prolonged life.
MG: Who was your first crush?
JV: Conner. In Kindergarten. He was originally one of the pieces, but over the years, he got out ruled by more prominent categories that were more recurring. I worked hard for Conner, but I think he was into another girl. Or no one. Because he was in Kindergarten. Too bad.
MG: Has making art about your crushes changed the way you’ve thought about them, or brought new things to life?
JV: Yeah, it’s making me have a lot more fun with them. It’s really fun to get a new crush and wonder which category they fit into. There is one category called “The Prospect” and everyone in the world I haven’t previously had a crush on can technically fit in there. That’s fun. It’s fun thinking I can fall in love with or grow a crush for anyone at any time.
MG: What do you think your former crushes would say if they saw you now?
JV: “You’re nuts.” That is what they say now. And I say, “You so pretty.”
MG: Do you have any other upcoming projects?
JV: Yeah, after this show, I am in musical hermitage, and just going to get very good and ready to play the Dawson City Music Festival. Then, I’ve got this Cats of Dawson calendar that I promised myself I would make. That’ll be a project. They actually keep falling into my lap. It’s good for the mind, but bad for the pocket. I need to quit doing creative projects pretty soon here and start making cash money at a prosperous retail or service job.
Catch Jessica’s show, Crush or be Crushed: It’s a state not a question, before she starts making cash money—July 3 through July 19 at the Confluence Members Gallery (SOVA, 3rd and Queen).