An introduction to my work…

As a gourd artist, I find that working in the round is perfect for me.  I love to tell a story with my art.  Being able to turn the gourd around and see a different scene on panels, or a whole scene unfold brings another dimension than working on a flat canvas.

My primary medium is pyrography, or wood burning.  This is nothing new, artists of South America and Africa have been burning on gourds for hundreds of years.  It has replaced my brushes and paints that I previously entertained, the subtleties of brown seem to me to be more expressive than choosing from a myriad of color.  Yet, color is not totally absent from my work.

In this entitled, Celtic Sea; I depicted 3 panels of ocean life.  Humpback Whales are pictured here, and on the other panels are dolphins and seals.  The color added is actually crushed turquoise inlay.  This piece holds meaning for me, as once upon a time I dreamed of being a marine biologist.  The ocean life theme reappears many times in my work.

In my Medieval Hunt series, this one is the Hunt for the Stag; I chose, instead of panels, to depict a 360 degree scene.  My inspiration came from medieval tapestries.  This scene is again, all burned, with the turquoise Celtic knot work done with inlayed crushed stone.  The top and bottom portions are carved by hand.
And here is me, Jenn Avery, cleaning out and preparing a dried gourd for art.
Any gourd artist will be well acquainted with my fashionable attire!
Feel free to visit my official website, and sign up for my newsletter!

4 responses to “An introduction to my work…

  1. I have been crafting gourds for approx. 2 years in East Liverpool, Ohio. The people in my community are dumbfounded by what i can do with them. Yet, when i look at your work, mine is soooo amateur. I too, wanted to be a marine biologist at one point in my life, but now am a dental hygienist. How long does it take you to complete your masterpieces? What do you sell them for? I would love to take your class. Do ;you ever come to Ohio?
    thank you
    lisa chronister

    • Thank you Lisa! I did go to the Ohio Gourd Show some time ago, it was a fabulous festival I highly recommend it if you can ever go there. How long a gourd takes all depends on each one individually. Sometimes, the concept and design takes longer than the finished gourd! Lots of research and sketching goes into it before I even begin the gourd itself. My work for sale is available on Etsy, just do a search for JRA Gourd Art and you will find me there🙂 Have fun with your gourds! -Jenn

  2. Arturo J. Ramirez

    Well, to be completely honest, I can truly say that your the most talented gourd artist I have ever encountered. I have been enthralled with gourds as an art form starting in 1987. I am from New Mexico, my art form is exclusively gourds and I have to thank the late Fred Williams for providing initial inspiration, seeds and gourds. Mr. Williams once taught a class at the University of New Mexico in the 70’s titled “Growing Gourds For Fun and Profit”!! At the time very few people even knew what a gourd was. Only native and/or indigenous people were familiar with gourds. I have produced close to a thousand pieces, however, I rarely photographed them! I do hope to someday see your work in real life. However, your excellent photos are a huge inspiration. I currently work with power tools (Dremel type) to craft gourds in Aztec or Mayan designs that look like ancient lava or rock. I aim for an art piece that looks at least 1000 years old. I have done Celtic designs (painted acrylic) in the past, and will again produce some with the power tool carving. It is a huge INSPIRATION to know such a talented and gifted gourd artist spends valuable time on this beautiful planet transforming a dry gourd into a magnificent work of art!! You rock, and your work is Gourdgeous!! Pun intended. Arturo J. Ramirez, Alburquerque New Mexico

    • Thank you Arturo! I appreciate your generous and kind compliments! Your work sounds so interesting and I would love to see them, I think you ought to start taking pictures! It sounds like you are having fun creating, never lose that initial spark of enthusiasm- blessings, Jenn

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