Raised on a cattle ranch in eastern Washington, Jay Olinger is an interdisciplinary artist-scholar residing in Portland, Oregon, where she teaches at Portland Community College and Portland State University.
Jay received a B.S. in Arts and Letters from Portland State University with Minors in Art History, English, and Medieval Studies; as well as a Post-Baccalaureate in Comics Studies and Art History. After holding a position at Marvel in the Special Projects Department in 2016, she pursued graduate studies in Scotland, where she graduated with Highest Distinction from the University of Dundee with a Master of Design in Comics and Graphic Novels, fully-funded by the Principal’s International Excellence Scholarship. Jay’s graduate project, Prompt(ed), was awarded the 2017 Duncan of Jordanstone Comics Prize. Prompt(ed) was an interdisciplinary project that combined research and hands-on application that explored the intersection of media application in Fine Art and Comics.
Along with teaching, Jay presents her research at international conferences, curates group exhibitions, and creates short comics. She welcomes opportunity for research, teaching, workshops and collaboration in any form.
Cancelled COVID Events: Transitions 9 in London, UK; Pop Conferences at DePaul University, Chicago, IL
June 2020-August 2020: Teaching Understanding Architecture and Understanding the Visual Arts at Portland Community College
September 2020-December 2020: Understanding Architecture (2) and Understanding the Visual Arts at Portland Community College
July 3, 2020
Kintsugi. "Golden Repair."
Part fashion, part charcoal, part Nick Cave influence.
Stemming from the ideas of reuse and transformation, I was inspired to create a second necklace. Gathering and charring yard debris, I used burnt twigs and vines to use as weft reinforcement for a woven choker. The yarn material used to create the choker is from second-hand scraps (from SCRAP), again, based on this notion of transforming and re-contextualizing an object/material(s). It is very messy to wear.
This first project was informed by current events. I've been under self-isolation for 3+ months, as most, due to the pandemic. I have become reliant on delivery services and ordering goods online which has unfortunately resulted in an increase in plastic. Bags, containers, wraps, bubbles... If plastic is unavoidable, I try to use it at least twice, which has been challenging.
Coal, charcoal, burning--it makes me think of transformation, which in a broad sense envelops art, too. Making something out of nothing, re-contextualizing materials. I stripped Amazon Prime bubble mailers in order to make a mask, commenting on my own consumerism during a global pandemic. The lower portion of the mask is made of paper cranes and tissue paper flowers from interior packaging. I formed the mask to resemble a bevor and gorget (medieval armour) to align with my own interest in medieval studies, one of my research areas. The mas itself represents me, at this moment, while also signifying transformation, altering materials for a new purpose, as fire transforms a material into another.
My original intention was to burn the mask, thinking that the plastic wouldn't be as flammable as the paper components, resulting in a melted object. Having the birds and flowers combust, leaving the plastic, would signify the eventual destruction of nature and wildlife due to plastic and non-biodegradable goods. Unexpectedly, it all burned, and QUICKLY.
The takeaway, the phoenix, the renewal coming from ash, is still intact.