Jerri Allyn

Jerri Allyn (New York, NY) creates interactive installations and performance art events that become a part of public life and build connections with various audiences and the art world. An artist and educator with 20 years of experience introducing contemporary art to new publics, the artist develops structures that allow for participation and a spectrum of opinions to be voiced.

Raised in the North East and trained on the West Coast, Allyn has been influenced by the Art / Life Performance School of Thought that seeks to blur the lines between high art and real life. Allyn has additionally embraced the objectives of the Feminist Art Movement, which strives to raise issues, invite dialogue and ultimately transform culture.

Grant funded and commissioned for 20 years, most of Allyn's work is in a narrative or storytelling form and deals with communication theory. The artist strives for aesthetic innovations, incorporating historical facts, contemporary insights, community views and a satiric wit. The adage "the personal is political" continues to fuel her work - the synthesis of "lived experience" resonating with timely social concerns. In allegiance to no particular medium, Allyn uses the most appropriate form, depending on the ideas and intentions of a piece, working extensively in site specific public performance and installation art; audio, video, electric signs, and billboards; artists books, graphic multiples and page art.

Allyn has also been a part of many collaborative groups and partnerships, and notes that one plus one never simply equals two. In collaborations, with other artists, organizations, or specific communities, one plus one always equals something greater than two individuals can accomplish on their own. Allyn's training in cognitive and aesthetic development focused on how we learn as human beings and she provides audiences with multiple opportunities to access issues raised in a work of art.

Brought up a Quaker, the artist continues to be an activist, most recently advocating for national policies on culture and art education. Allyn received a Masters of Art in Art and Community from Goddard College, Vermont, through an independent study at the Los Angeles, California campus. Two years were spent on studio art, research about new forms, and 20th century art and community art movements through The Feminist Studio Workshop at The Woman's Building: A Public Center for Women's Culture. The program included a cross-disciplinary, multi-cultural pedagogy in Women's Studies. In her third year, Allyn participated in an innovative Teacher Training Program that introduced progressive methodologies and strategies to have students realize their creative potential by: drawing out the individual voice and rich variety of multi-cultural experiences among students through experiential exercises.