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Artist Profile: Kim Jensen Mosaics

April 26, 2011

Art is a personal thing, and we’d like you to get to know the people behind the “products” in the shop.  Therefore, each week, RooTs will be profiling a different artist so you can hear their inspirations, aspirations (and frustrations).   First up,  Kim Jensen Mosaics, our featured artist during the month of May.

Please tell us the name of your business and what you create.

The name of my business is Kim Jensen Mosaics where I create artistically designed, one of kind, handmade creations such as mosaics, jewelry and stationary.

Where do you live?

San Francisco in the Mission District

Give us a little history of how you got into the business. What inspires you? Do you have a day job?

When I was a child I liked to collect rocks, shells, coins, marbles, anything small and shiny that don’t serve much purpose other than collecting dust.  I had all these collections but they just piling up and then one day I was in a store and came across a mosaic book that instantly inspired me.  I got supplies from my parents and taught myself to tile in my bedroom and have been tiling ever since.  People tend to find little trinkets for me or bring me little treasures from their world travels and these always inspire my work and these treasures should be showcased and displayed in an artistic way.  These little pieces add significance, culture and history to any of the pieces I create.  As for a day job, I currently teach visual arts at a high school in San Francisco and also teach workshops and night classes at other small businesses when I can.

Describe your creative process when creating your product line.

I get inspired and a creative charge from the materials itself. I love searching for interesting tiles, marbles,rocks, figures, cards, etc… That special object I pick will get glued down and then I choose whatever colors grab me and just add on from there.  It’s a very instinctive process for me.

What is something unique or interesting about you or the process?

I never have a plan other than I want to use one specific object or a specific color scheme.  When you look at my work, that is what I was thinking at that very moment.

What do you enjoy most about your work? The least?

I love collecting the bits and pieces but there is nothing like when you are done grouting your mosaic and you get to see your finished piece for the first time.  This is what I often call, “the birth of the mosaic”.  As you clean off the grout the tiles, colors and textures start to appear and once it’s all clean you see it all put together for the first time and it’s just so satisfying.  It’s also very rewarding to see people other than family and friends react to your work in a such a positive way.

What have you learned along the way?

This has been quite a journey and it’s still going.  I have certainly learned that there are people out there that value what I do and the work that I create but you have to value yourself so you can price your work at a profitable rate.  Just because we are artists and our talents are not conventional or seem practical it is still worth more than a penny.

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