Joan Jonas and the Mixed Bag of Media

Reanimation (2010, 2012, 2014)

Joan Jonas is a performance and video artist who was born in New York but now spends her summers in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia.

She is one of the earliest practitioners of video art, by running different experiments in her loft using a closed-circuit system. Over the years her art exhibits have been a mix of installations and performances which make use of different objects, actors, poetry and costumes. There is such a wide range of projects that you can almost classify her approach as making use of anything and everything.

One other aspect to Jonas’ performances is they are open to improvisation, whereas other artists in this style might use tightly choreographed experiences.

Something to take away from her experience is to spend time collecting ideas, and not to be afraid to experiment. The work will take on a life of its own if you give it permission to exist.

Further Reading:

Joan Jonas on The Art Story

Enter the Surreal World of Avant Garde Artist and Filmmaker Joan Jonas