Tangled Landscapes–An Exhibit by Jane Reiter

Jane Reiter Exhibit, Tangled Landscapes
Watercolor and Zentangle Merge      

Artist Bio
Jane Reiter is an artist and teacher in Delta Township, Eaton County, having relocated from New Jersey to Michigan in 2000. Her academic background is in fiber, having earned undergraduate and graduate degrees in studio art. She also holds a Master of Library Science.

Jane uses mixed media collage as her primary expression, incorporating fiber, yarn and fabric along with stitching and glueing. Love of color, pattern, texture and a sense of humor infuses her artwork. Her work as a librarian, is also expressed in her art; she enjoys incorporating bits and pieces from books and magazines into her mixed media collages. She loves repurposing nontraditional materials into new and unexpected fabrics and objects.In 2007 Jane began focusing on mandalas and radial designs in collages.Researching mandalas led her to “Zendalas” created from “Zentangle®.” Zentangle is a meditative and soothing approach to drawing patterns on a variety of surfaces, starting simply with pen and paper. Jane was very intrigued by this art form and began seeking out and observing Zendalas and tangled patterns. She quickly realized that she wanted to combine her extensive teaching experience of arts and crafts with Zentangle.

In 2012 Jane was awarded the Chris Clark Fellowship from the Arts Council of Greater Lansing. The Fellowship allowed her to travel to Providence, Rhode Island to train with the founders of Zentangle, Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas. They opened her eyes to a fresh way of utilizing drawing and art skills and provided a new path to inner growth and spiritual practice. This was a life-changing seminar for her.

Zentangle has greatly impacted her creative life, providing her with inspiration in her artwork; she now uses much more drawing to express ideas. The emphasis on patterns truly feeds off of her previous textile design experience. Consequently, she works to include drawn and painted patterns within collage pieces. Jane has exhibited her work in numerous regional shows and sales and has twice had her work chosen to be featured on the Arts Council’s “Art in the Sky” billboards. Jane continues to teach art to all ages on a part-time basis in the Lansing area.

Artist Statement
I make art because I am able to speak visually where words often fail me. I cannot NOT make art! Art in its many forms is always with me — in my daydreams, imaginings and daily activities.

This exhibit offers a fresh approach, mixing watercolor painting along Zentangle® inspired patterns. Zentangle® is a meditative approach to drawing patterns in a peaceful, reflective manner. I utilize my imagination as a starting point, creating these rolling hills and gentle contours of pleasant landscapes.I am inspired by blue skies, green meadows, wooded terrain and shorelines along with all the luscious colors in between.

The landscapes refer to land and sky along with a deep appreciation of an earthly connection. The spirited use of color is bold and sprightly — it represents art inspired by nature and growth. The patterns I draw with black ink suggest plants, leaves, grasses, weeds, vines, branches and sprouts.

The colorful landscapes are not real or actual places but amiable and good-natured environments. My artful interpretation of the natural environment provides a winsome world for the viewer. I use simple materials such as cold press watercolor paper and watercolor paint to create lively, animated backdrops for drawing.

I draw with a black ink pen — both pigment ink and permanent oil based ink. The patterns and repetitive designs grow out of my Zentangle practice and love of textile designs. “Tangled Landscapes” represents to me a small body of work pushing my technical use of watercolor paint and my conceptual use of tangled patterns combined into visual statements.

This exhibit displays my success at working abstractly within a landscape framework, including a horizon line with land and sky. I appreciate this wonderful opportunity to share my excitement and involvement with creative expression.