Janet Jaffke is an international fiber and mixed media artist. She was born and raised in Chicago, and now resides in a small farm town in Alsace, France. She graduated with a BFA from the Chicago School of the Art Institute where she focused on textile design and fiber art.
After moving to France in 2013, Janet worked primarily in acrylic mixed media, using collage as part of the process. While exploring various ways to create textured paintings, Janet collaged a piece of burlap from a salvaged produce bag onto her painting. This was the beginning of her fascination with the material. At first she buried the material under layers of paint, but eventually let go of the paint when she recognized the beauty of burlap in its natural state. Soon the burlap moved off the painting and became the primary focus and material in her work.
Janet has had artist residencies in Florence, Italy; St. Joe, Michigan; and Lewiston, New York. Her work has been featured in art and literary magazine,“WovenTale Press.” She has exhibited in Florence, Italy; Chicago, IL; Basel, Switzerland; and Paris, France. In 2024 Janet was shortlisted for the Hopper Prize.
She has worked in collaboration with writer LaurieShoulterKarall who after following her work on social media was inspired to write stories in response to her postings. Their book “Catch” was published in September 2022.
Listen to my interview with Kerry Schroeder for the Nicholas Wilton’s Art2Life Academy. I talk with Kerry on my transition working from painting and mixed media to working with burlap and fiber.