Jen Elek is a Northwest studio artist and educator working primarily in glass, neon and steel. Jen utilizes blown furnace glass to create sculptural objects that display the materials ability to reflect, magnify and represent bold color. Traditional and innovative processes combine in Jen’s work to create colorful landscapes of glass.
Elek holds a BFA from The New York School of Art and Design at Alfred University. Since moving to Seattle, WA in 1995, Jen has worked as both a glass artist and metal fabricator for many notable Northwest artists. Elek worked as a key member of Maestro Lino Tagliapietra’s glass-blowing team for 15 years. Elek has been awarded multiple residencies at The Museum of Glass in Tacoma, WA, and the museum’s Red Hot auction grand prize juror’s choice award. Jen has had residencies at Pittsburgh Glass Center and the Pilchuck Glass School. She has led art education programming for at-risk youth at the Schack Arts Center in Everett, WA and the Remann Hall program at the Museum of Glass. Jen has taught workshops at The Pilchuck Glass School in Stanwood WA, Penland School for Crafts in North Carolina, Urban Glass NY, The Sydney College of Art, AUS, and The Jam Factory in Adelaide, AUS. She has been a visiting lecturer at Jacksonville University and the University of Washington Seattle, WA. Elek recently joined the board of trustees of Pilchuck Glass School. She shares a studio with her husband Jeremy Bert in South Seattle. Jen teaches workshops and exhibits her work internationally.
"The work is versatile in that it can take the shape of different architectural spaces and react to those spaces. The Dot installations started around a simple idea of providing a space where people could experience joy by being immersed in a landscape of color. The spherical form lends a feeling of buoyancy giving the large installations a lightness. Everyone has their own relationship and associations with color. It is one of the most individual experiences we can have. in that everyone sees color differently. The colors surrounding the color you are looking at affect the way you perceive that color all adding to that unique experience of the perception of color."