Jeannie Ortiz lives her life devoted to Art and exploration. Her personal and artistic histories are inextricably linked and truly are one and the same. Her creative journeys began in childhood with an ever-present and insatiable hunger for studying the world through creativity which continues to this day.
Exploration into the heart of nature holds a vital role in Jeannie’s life. It could be said that she lives for adventure and learning. Whether it be a day outing at the local mountain to climb rocks, hiking 700 miles of the Grand Enchantment Trail across the deserts of the Southwest or riding a motorcycle through the Himalayas, they are all gifts full of stories. They teach and inform.
In exploring what it means to be human, she draws from the natural world to create objects of protection, adornment, utility and symbolism. The work begins with raw materials; threads of silk, cotton, linen, alpaca and wool, as well as wood, stone and glass. Materials reaching back to the foundation of human civilization. Magical alchemy brings colors to life through the dyeing of fibers with harvested leaves, roots, flowers, fruits and fungi.
Weaving integrates these elements with zen-like repetition of the technological marvel that is the handloom. Uniting this process is nature, informing both her materials and imparting the spark of inspiration. Weaving on the loom has much the same rhythm as walking through nature, each motion a step into exploration.
The process of weaving exists within a well-worn trail that has wound its way through all of human history. Each thread passed through the loom adds a new layer to an ancient story; a new mode of exploration and intimate expression is revealed. Weaving pieces that can be worn, used and loved for generations, she is honored to carry this ancient craft into the future.
The rhythm of the loom is like a heartbeat; dance is the outward expression of that same rhythm. Intertwined with her love for fiber art is her love for dance and movement. The dances are explorations of spirit and space. Performances bring the wonder and awe of being suspended in the heart of the natural world to people, inspiring a deep love and reverence for the earth that is our home.