EILEEN WEST GALLERY
CONTEMPORARY AND OUTSIDER ART
Self Portrait 2008
ARTWORK PAGES: 1 - 2
Movie: HOLDING STILL
A little Biographical Information
Janis Sawyer grew up among fabric swatches and Interior Design magazines and spent high school vacations with her father in New York City, creating color renderings for university libraries. She has a set of fancy French colored pencils still—somewhere.
As an adult, Janis took off on a series of sojourns in small and preferably secluded places. The first of her many favorite years were spent on the side of a mountain in Germany with good friends, not much money, no amenities, and two infant boys. She gave up what she considered a paradise and settled in her next favorite place, Coconut Grove, the Miami artists' Utopia of the '60s. That magic would not last. One tragic moment redefined her life. That event is the content of the international award winning short film HOLDING STILL by Florian Reigle:
This is a link to an interview with Florian at the Festival de Popoli 2010:
Moving ahead with her new life and mourning the gentrification of her beloved Grove, Janis migrated to her next best place—Seaside, Florida.
She delighted in the slap of the waves on the shore at night. She and Fred were two of the earliest settlers in what has become an acknowledged world phenomina of "New urbanist" design.
(Fred, whose name is not Fred, is another story altogether.)
Janis always craved an artistic outlet and worked variously in graphic design, as an editor of photos, poetry and short stories, and editor of the single edition" Hogtown Hooter". That magazine was so controversial it never published again. Janis was right in the middle of it without ever leaving her bed. She involved herself in myriad enterprises and necver ceased to nourish her inquisitive nature. Her interests unusual, her eye quirky. She began taking stills of her room or, more accurately, parts of her room. At crazy angles. Fred put a security cam on the outside of the house. Mostly we watch a live feed of the baby mockingbirds born in the porch beams. But Janis clicked away, selecting certain vignettes in the lens.
Janis said she was "surprised" by the views around the corner, down the street, at the foot of her bed, and beyond the window behind her. She was "smitten with this newfound perspective, fascinated with the alternating motion and stillness of the camera and the nature of its output!", she began capturing its revelations—every edge, shape and shimmer of her environment. Her husband, Fred, finds new venues for the camera, and Janis, peeking around corners, continues to make digital photographs and, more frequently recently, animations. She is shooting low res images which slip right into an animation format and the results are fresh. "Whoop Whoop" is my perennial favorite.
"Between Here and There"
"Tree House Madonna"
"Petit Pan Pattypan"
Sawyer's work is available through the gallery as prints at $180. each.
Prints are matted to 8" x 10" and printed on Epson Premium Luster Photo Paper with an Epson Professional Printer using archival inks.
850.502.1847 / 850.225.3024