Jenn Mishler

dried moss, wire, wasp nest
24 x 12 x 7 in.

In my work, I am interested in the conversations created from combining natural and human-made, materials. The materials I use take new forms when placed together and re-purposing them creates a whole new environment. I use materials indigenous to the Midwest, specifically the area around the Great Lakes region where I grew up. I have lived among the plants and animals in this area my whole life and know them well, but using them in this way forces me to take a closer look at them.

Some of the natural materials I work with include wool, moss, wasp nests, sticks, and tree barks. Some of the human-made materials I use are found objects that I collected as a kid or other materials or objects that bring fond memories to me about growing up in North Eastern Indiana.

I find inspiration in structures found in nature, either grown or animal-constructed. Most animals use whatever is readily available to them and many can adapt their structures depending on what they have to work with. Animals have to adapt to survive and their habitats tell a story about their lives and what our ecosystem looks like today.

I want a habitat consisting of natural forms coexisting among the clearly artificial. How can we preserve our natural habitat while our industry and technology have become necessities of our society? In the contrast between nature and our modern society that we live in today, is it possible for us to maintain a balance of both?