By Donna Parker
Jennifer Stanley ’90 paints such bright and bold brushstrokes that they literally leap from the canvas portraying raw emotion.
“You can clearly see in each work whether there was pain, contentment or happiness in my life. I’m very black and white in that way, which is in obvious contrast to the colors that I choose to use.”
Jennifer doesn’t use depth or shadows much, meaning the art is right there staring at you, provoking your own emotions as you study the many faces of the women that she paints.
“I am a very dramatic person and I’m always telling myself, ‘Contain it, contain it,’ although maybe that just hurts me in the end.”
Jennifer, who, at one point in her life, wanted to work for the CIA, is currently the lubricants communications manager for CITGO Petroleum in Houston and if you’re wondering how those two diverse careers integrate…
“I started off as an art major at Trinity, but my parents were very practical people who insisted I study something more pragmatic and job-worthy – thus, I took a detour into the world of communications.”
Jennifer, who worked at the San Antonio Museum of Art while in college, says Trinity instilled in her the ability to be a critical thinker.
“Bill Christ, chair of the department of communication, taught me to always think about the context and to think critically. Also, because we were expected to write in so many of our classes, we learned to express ourselves through words, instead of answering standardized test questions. That helps in so many ways because you always have the edge on things.”
Most of Jennifer’s life has been spent on the road, usually side by side with her 10-year-old son, Morgan Stanley.
“My son has traveled with me to 60 countries. He’s most at home while on the road,” laughs Jenny, who continues, “He had his first passport when he was one week old!”
“We’ve been to most Latin American countries and lived in Venezuela and Argentina, which have influenced my art tremendously. In addition, a travel to Mongolia and Tibet inspired my theme show, “Nomadic Butterfly”, which recently debuted in Worcester, Massachusetts. Each place I visit is inspirational. To me every visit is ALL about the people. After meeting with the Kuna Indians of the San Blas Islands in Panama, I hosted my Houston show, “Let’s Kuna, Let’s Mola.”
Her most dramatic work, though, that has been shown in various art venues is “Flight of the Butterfly…With Veil, Without Veil” which depicts the plight of the Afghani Women. Jennifer has worked for years trying to paint the faces of the women of Afghanistan. Her work includes an installation of Burqas that the viewer can put their head in the veil to view the faces of the women of Afghanistan through the veil.
Jennifer was recently selected as one of the next up and coming international artists and will be one of the artists featured in the 2007, New Art International Book which will be carried in all Barnes and Noble stores. She will also participate in the Second Annual Alumni Artisans’ Showcase on Oct. 20 during Alumni Weekend.
“My biggest goal is that I want to make a difference to humanity, either through my paintbrush or my heart. You just can’t give up on your dreams. In my opinion, it’s all about the journey to realize those dreams. Whether I’m working in a corporate position or working on my art, I believe in doing something creative – cultivating your true passion in life to the fullest.”
“Humble me, create a “portrait” said my spirit that reflects the nature of humanity’s soul”
For more information on Jennifer’s art or to contact her, please visit: