Jenn Garland is a visual artist with ten years’ experience in applied psychological research of environmental policy and sustainability. She is interested in interdisciplinary practice and the role of cultural values in influencing the ways people interact with and perceive the world around them.

Jenn has degrees from Curtin University of Technology in Psychology (BSc- Hons, First class) and Fine Art (BA), and is close to completing a PhD at the University Of Western Australia. Her art practice incorporates sculpture, installation, painting and printmaking to explore how the ‘myth of progress’ and methods of science and industry have shaped landscapes and the course of history.

She has been a co-director and gallery manager of the Paper Mountain artist run initiative, and curated a number of exhibitions including Dark Skies Ahead (2018) for Unhallowed Arts events organised by SymbioticA.

Jenn has worked as the Front of House Manager at Perth Institute of Contemporary Art (PICA) since 2017, taking a year leave in 2019 during which time she exhibited work in the Fremantle Biennale and completed an artist residency at Fremantle Arts Centre.

She reinterprets the language and methods of science in her art, which adopts a research approach to creating and questioning meaning. Fieldwork, physical experiments, and archival records are used in a quasi-scientific manner. This not only reflects her background, but is also intended as a means of challenging the role of science in supporting dominant economic and social systems.

Often site-specific, her work explores landscapes which bear the scars of human activity. Here spaces that are temporary, obsolete, abandoned, derelict, liminal and infrastructural are exposed as sites of conflict over values and power. These contested landscapes can be read as a warning of impending global crisis, of progress which benefits only the few, and of blind-faith in technological solutions.

In response to these places and ideas, Jenn uses materials in symbolic and experimental ways. For instance, collecting and assembling found materials into mixed-media works and bricolage, or using destructive and transformative processes such as oxidisation, bleaching, dyeing, melting and distortion.  These physical experiments result in textures and forms similar to those found in the places she explores, but also represent a form of alchemy: mystical, philosophical and protoscientific.