The Torpedo Space

Entering the space, to the left we built walls so we can have three individual spaces and two shared spaces.
My messy space, trying to get it organized and get everything in there. It is a long hard process for me and my organizational skills.
The future coldshop and wood shop with the bathroom to the right.
Emma's space and our future gallery space.
The lovely green door in the back with a small "man door" in it.

Here are some picts from my new studio space in south philly, on 8th and Tasker, shared with two other artists. It used to be a door factory and then was bought and made into studio's and living spaces. This is still the beginning, we plan to have a small gallery space, a small coldshop, and small woodshop. I will keep updating new picts as it moves along.



Art Critic Robin Rice wrote an Essay from an interview with me during my fellowship at wheaton arts

“We all need to understand why we are here; why we exist and how we exist,” observes Jessica Julius, a Spring 2007 Resident Fellow at the Creative Glass Center of America. Yet her work suggests that although she finds this question endlessly intriguing, it is one to which she does not postulate or expect a definitive answer.

The idea of an evolving truth makes sense in the context of Julius’s on-going interest in science, especially physiology, an area of study which is never exhausted as each answer gives rise to new questions. In various ways within her work, Julius consistently juxtaposes the specificity of scientific observation with the mundane sometimes inchoate perceptions of lived experience. This disjuncture of perceptions is manifested in the silvery glass models of eyes to which she attached false eyelashes: silly yet rigorous and, yes, eyes in which we see distorted reflections of our own eyes.

Julius’ 2006 MFA from the Rochester Institute of Technology, followed up on studies of glass at Tyler and Pilchuck. At RIT she moved “beyond the limited vocabulary of just the material [glass]” to concentrate on photography, though mostly of glass. Perhaps not coincidentally, both fields can be expressive and are inevitably technically driven. Julius utilized glass with photography throughout her graduate exhibition “Static Synapse.” Some glass images were cast from the body, a technique which in this context functions as a primary layer of imprinting. She then photographed or printed the casts as photograms.

The mouth, Julius notes, can be “disgusting, beautiful and humorous,” qualities which make it a flexible, multi-faceted subject. She used a negative cast of her own as the basis of photograms. The witty, Clenched, a 5’ long repeating row of teeth cast in glass sandwiched between horizontal red lips, tells a story or perhaps half a dialogue.

Arbitrarily reorganized body fragments, illustrate Julius’ interest in morphological and physiological categories. Where does the finger end and the palm begin? In addition to differently organized categories, Julius is engaged by “rules about how things should look.” One of her installations in “Static Synapse” combined casts of “hybrid” fingers and parts of hands with site specific drawing. Photograms of these cast elements are labeled as if for scientific study.

Inspired by a sick cat, the “Spit Print Series,” combines her interest in the mouth with the observation of the ephemeral and of transformation over time. Julius drooled onto a sheet of glass and used the bubbly saliva as the basis of a photogram. The prints provocatively preserve and make beautiful something useless — even repulsive (once it’s left the mouth).

Julius recognizes an element of nostalgia in the most ambitious project she tackled during her CGCA fellowship. With it, she moves from the body as a subject to a focus on “how we experience things.” She made molds of old milk bottles from pastoral York, PA, in order to make new glass bottles in the same pattern. The original “artifacts that represent people and history” were made for the Julius Dairy, a well-documented business which belonged to her family. Her father has around fourteen different bottles from the dairy. Bottles from the Shepard Dairy are owned by a grandmother’s family; Julius may also reproduce those. She hopes to locate the factory where the bottles were made and incorporate this information somehow in an installation.

She will make at least one bronze mold into which she will blow as many as 1,000 bottles, probably in white glass. She may also cast them experimentally in other materials, but probably not at CGCA. The range of casts will include a negative bottle in a box. For one installation, she plans a yard-high pyramid of bottles, as they might have been once displayed.

The installation and narrative suggested by the bottles may be shown at the York Historical Society, but Julius also views the milk bottle as an extension of her on-going interest in morphology and taxonomy. She wants to think about containers and “how we contain things,” as a broader category

Relating to her family but in a more contemporary and personal way, Julius is experimenting with glass parachutes. Small and light, they will be functional, at least until they touch down. They are designed to “sacrifice themselves to protect the object” they carry. This project relates to Julius’ brother who is currently completing his third tour of duty in Iraq. “Every day has its emotional weight,” she says.

Julius sees her residency as an opportunity to experiment. “Since grad school I’ve wanted to say more. Now I can say ‘I feel like doing this so I’m going to.'"


Hybrid- cast glass finger installation

The work "Hybrid" consists of opaque black glass fingers and a data system of rub-on-letters. Through isolating a part of the body, it becomes a foreign object however recognizable. The finger focuses on the action of touching, pointing, and defining information and represents our tactile experience. The small objects have characteristics of actual fingers through, realistic size, fingerprints, and quality of skin. They are placed on the wall in a way where they are pointing or containing parts of the data, representing an act of touch and inquiry in the same way we learn about the world through touch. Through the interface of the objects with the numbers, letters, and symbols the work talks about how we categorize, focus, and analyze with the use of technology, data, and systems. The impermanency of the work stresses the changing of information through time and how our systems change with new information and new discoveries.

Static- glass scribble

This installation is made from lampworked black glass and a glass photogram.

A dream is the experience of envisioned images, sounds, or other sensations during sleep. Sigmund Freud theorized that dreams are a reflection of human desires and promoted by external stimuli such as our environments. Joe Griffin states "dreams are metaphorical translations of waking expectations. Expectations that cause emotional arousal that is not acted upon during the day." "Static" was an attempt at transforming emotion into form. The inspiration for the work comes from a reoccurring dream. Within the dream, an infinite three-dimensional black line fills my vision and releases a low pitch constant hum. I am without body or form just aware of feeling. The line becomes tense and starts to vibrate like a heart beat monitor. The intensity builds until I wake up perspiring.

"FInger Prints" - photograms of glass fingers

Process- To make these images I take a mold from a part of my body and reproduce it in glass. The glass then becomes the negative which light is projected through onto photo-sensitive paper. The images contains qualities of both glass and the body.
In the 18th century, with the use of Technology, the western world changed from a text based society to a visually dependent society. Visual learning became not just a luxury but essential to our modern day life and education. The development of optical equipment made originally to help understand the world now supplies us with mass-produced images. Microscopes, scanning devices, and telescopes allow us to visually reach beyond the limits of our eyes and open up the micro and macro worlds of our existence. Our modern reality exists of fantasized, fabricated worlds on TV and computer screens.
My inspiration for the "Finger Print" series is from documents of early microscopic discoveries. These early hand drawn records showed forms that exist beyond what we can see with our eyes. The photographic process of using the enlarger to project light through an object of glass enlarges the view of the object in the same way a microscope functions. This process creates a metamorphosis of our perception of the object and our body.


Saliva Prints- "Spit Photograms"

The "Spit Print" series contains information that exists from human saliva however through enlargement have removed the physicality and cultural connotations of the saliva. The viscous quality of the images can resemble qualities of glass or other fluid materials. The rings of the bubbles look somewhat like a topographical map of a moon surface giving a sense of micro and macro. This metamorphosis of discarded bodily fluid, something socially found to be disgusting, becomes beautiful and unknown.

Process-  I project and focus light through my saliva onto light sensitive paper and develop it as you would normally with black and white photography. These prints are all at least 36 inches wide. 

"Products which cross such boundaries thereby become products of great cultural attention. What is both inside and outside the body (feces, spittle, urine, menstrual blood, etc...) tends to become taboo because of its ambiguous and anomalous status." -Susan Stewart's, "On Longing"