Monday, May 17, 2010

True Colors - Linn Jacobs


Linn Jacobs
Yellowgreen & Copper


Of the fifteen original participants in True Colors, it is with sadness that I need to say that one of these gifted artists, Linn Jacobs, is no longer with us. Two of her friends from the project generously shared some thoughts about Linn.

_______________
Lynne Perrella
A Remembrance of Linn Jacobs

When it comes to Mail Art and Collaborations, I feel like one of the dinosaurs. When I recently looked through a big trunk in our guest room, full-to-brimming with Mail Art, it was like time travel at its best. Imagine? – a whole community of artists exchanging Artwork through the Mail…..before computers!

Linn and I knew a lot of the same people in Correspondence and Book Arts but had never actually connected. It was like being part of the same solar system, but spinning in different orbits. Luckily, I ended up being in an art exchange with Linn’s daughter Lesley, and that opened the door to all of us getting acquainted – not only through sharing art, but also meeting at Artfest for a few memorable years. One of my favorite remembrances is having both mother and daughter in my classes, on different days, and seeing their strong shared affinity for lavish crisp color. Hand either of them a checkerboard stencil, or a piece of sequin scrim, and just stand back!

Linn was a masterful quote wrangler, as well as an inveterate list-maker. Many-if-not-all of her True Colors pages included long slender tags of hand-made or specialized papers, inscribed with her distinctive rounded hand-writing. The tags listed……things that are White, the colors of Fall, the shades of a sunset. Always with graceful strands of silky threads and fibers to hold them in place…..Very Linn. I always featured her, sitting at her art table writing out each tag, working fast to keep up with her quick playful mind – and then looking up and finding dozens of tags – and then turning those over to use the backs, too.

More, more, and more. Always more. I wish we had more time with Linn – more time to enjoy her warm generous spirit, her kind heart, her huge talent, and her way with words. She contributed so much to our group, and we’ll remember her always.

_______________
Marylinn Kelly
For Linn Jacobs

Not trusting my memory, I did a bit research in the TC text to be certain: yes, Linn Jacobs' Yellowgreen and Copper journal was the first one I received. My paragraph there tells how I began to feel my way into our exchange and, toward the end of the project, with the experience of many contributions achieved, eventually asked for the opportunity to rework my pages in her book.

Throughout the process, Linn and I emailed each other frequently and had a few chances to speak on the phone. Linn was generously open to my recounting of family lore, particularly as it involved my artist mother and her influence on my eccentric passions. We had a connection that touched lightly on challenges we both faced, yet the volume, the real substance, of our traded stories was optimism, a state about which I am not confused: it absolutely is a gift.

I feel we shared a view of life that always reminded there was good in everything. This was a woman who wrote in the introduction to her journal, "I love boggy places." Looking today at the pages she created for Sunset, I find in her circle/spiral motifs an expression of wholeness, completeness, overlaid by bright tendrils, rays of the sun that eventually reach every corner. The words that passed between us, her unmistakable joy of each moment, are treasured pieces of the light she embodied.

True Colors: A Palette of Collaborative Art Journals

13 comments:

Jill Zaheer said...

What a poignant post. I was not familiar with the work of Linn Jacobs, but from these heartfelt memories shared by Lynne and Marylinn, it's true to say that she was such a giving and optimistic person which was reflected in her art. Love the thought of her colors- yellow green and copper- even the selection sounds magical and as Marylinn wrote-"...her unmistakable joy of each moment, are treasured pieces of the light she embodied." Just beautful- a wonderful tribute to a shining soul. Thank you.

Four Seasons in a Life said...

My condolences to Linn Jacobs family and friends. Though she will be missed, those who had contact with her, know that a piece of her spirit lives on in you.

michelle ward said...

I'm late to the game here in commenting...crossing fingers this goes through (for the kajillionth try).

It is very heartwarming to read the words spun by Lynne and Marylinn about Linn. She a gentle, wise soul. I had printed out many email exchanges I had with her - always an interesting and deep perspective, and these two friends have remarked, she had a special gift of finding the right words. And she worked that wit and wisdom into the art she shared with us. *blowing kisses toward the sky*

Lynn said...

How sweet to be let in the door and listen quietly to your beautiful words of love, respect and appreciation for this soul known as Linn. Thank you for opening this door for us all.

paperqueen said...

The impact Linn had on her friends says so much about her character. These heartfelt and eloquent tributes have allowed me to know her a bit too, and I am grateful for that. Beautiful post.
Eileen

trudi said...

QUOTE: I feel we shared a view of life that always reminded there was good in everything. This was a woman who wrote in the introduction to her journal, "I love boggy places." Looking today at the pages she created for Sunset, I find in her circle/spiral motifs an expression of wholeness, completeness, overlaid by bright tendrils, rays of the sun that eventually reach every corner. The words that passed between us, her unmistakable joy of each moment, are treasured pieces of the light she embodied.

I was compelled to comment on this portion of this post for its wisdom and crispness of expressing a state of mind that I aspire to daily.

Could you be so kind as to clarify who wrote this? I believe it is Marylinn, but the signatures are above other paragraphs?

Thanks! ... A poignant reminder for all of us to live fully now.

altered bits said...

kerin and i were on the phone last night and she'd asked if i read this post yet, mentioning that it was very touching. she is right! although i am not familiar with linn jacobs or her work, i feel honored to hear such heart warming stories about her from two people who were. my condolences to her family and friends and my thanks to you three (seth, lynn and marylinn) for sharing these stories with us.

helen said...

many of my friends have told me I should have a copy of True Colors and after reading all the comments etc.; I agree and will go on the search to see if I can find it
sounds like a wonderful book
helen

Kerin said...

Wow Alicia is so right. This really had an effect on me in many ways.

If you get a chance, stop by to see a piece I'm working on which was inspired by this post and by Linn's artwork. It includes a little tribute to Linn embroidered into the silk fabric remnant.

http://remnantsofolde.com/2010/05/19/news-and-such/

Thanks for doing this True Colors series, Seth. It was awesome.

Sharmon Davidson said...

I just wanted to say that I've really enjoyed reading all the True Colors posts, and the artists whose work I've discovered by doing so. I'm kind of embarrassed to admit I don't have the book; now I definitely have to buy it!

Lesley said...

Thank you Seth and all of the sweet people commenting on his blog entry. My name is Lesley Jacobs and I am Linn's daughter. I appreciate all of your dear thoughts and memories shared here. I miss my mom every single day and I hold her dear and close to my heart. It was her ability to see the world through optimistic and curious eyes, and enjoy every minute that has inspired me in life. There isn't a moment to lose, and there is so much to enjoy. Color, whimsy, connections with friends and family, exploration of the inner and outer worlds... My mom loved and appreciated life and all of those people who loved her. Her artist friends and co-conspirators were her cherished creative touchpoints and she relished each and every project that we collaborated on together. I am finding myself revved up to start another "go round" so I can get back in the creative groove with the gang. I wish you all could have known my mom Linn. She'd have gathered you up, encouraged playful exploration, and jubilant friendship.

Leslie Avon Miller said...

I was so pleased to get to see Linn's work in True Colors - what a legacy she left!

Skybridge Studios said...

Taking another look through my correspondence with Linn this week, remembering with gratitude the encouragement and generosity of spirit she shared with me. Sending positive energy to her on her continuing journey.