Meet Artist Jamie Kelty in Person

Jamie Kelty
Peripheral Visions
June  6, 2023 Opening Reception

Jamie Kelty Fine Art Mixed Media The Swimmers Sutro Baths San Francisco
The Swimmers

Poet and/the Bench is delighted to announce a new artist and exhibition by San Francisco-based fine artist and educator Jamie Kelty titled “Peripheral Visions”. Story is at the heart of her artworks; the raw materials and meticulous details in Jamie Kelty's collages and mixed media paintings are magical worlds she creates to reflect memories, history and a crafted world of design.  

Jamie’s detailed scenes use drawn images the artist cuts from her sketchbook, torn assorted papers, found or recycled 3-dimensional objects and other detritus in various forms. Acrylic paint, ink, and drawing materials are used as an underpainting and to add details, texture and design to the artwork.

Jamie Kelty Mixed Media Making Connections San Francisco Golden Gate Bridge
Making Connections

“It’s amazing what one can find along a walk. Some plastic or metal piece that fell from a vehicle. The shape, the design, the history all resonate with me,” describes Jamie Kelty.

Jamie Kelty Fine Art Mixed Media Collage

The exhibition includes a selection of new and existing works. The people Jamie features are characters she observes and imagines–whom she has drawn in her sketchbook and cut out as part of the detailed, textural collage work she employs. Colors appear in combinations of earthy and bold, giving the paintings a visceral quality and textural depth, which is at once urban and elemental. The meaningful, whimsical and layered universe she creates in each collage or mixed media painting may also share inspiration from the city of San Francisco, her love of mid-century furniture and art history.

Jamie Kelty Fine Art Sketchbook_Collage and Mixed Media

A few of her artworks are themed. In Jamie’s series Inside/Out she describes her process as sorting and organizing paper, images, photos, and magazines. “I asked myself what draws me to these images and how could I make more use of them in my work. I discovered that I could compose these interesting and surreal scenes that mashed inside with outside. I found joy in adding furniture and other types of interior clues that I find intriguing into these scene scapes,” tells the artist.

Her Small Works on wood blocks are a reuse project using wood blocks given to her by her artist-uncle who made the blocks for his college students’ exhibition. Jamie combined sketches she drew of Sunday jazz musicians at Cafe International on lower Haight Street and sketches of the video installation “The Visitors” by Ragnar Kjartansson & The All Star Band at SFMOMA in 2022. She further added images from interior environments to ground the work and give it a place, layering more paint to unify the elements. 

Jamie Kelty Mixed Media Collage_A Warm Sort of Cool

These meticulous works transform in person and we hope to see you soon to experience the ongoing art we'll be carrying from this local artist.

Link to collection.
Read an interview with the artist about the exhibition.

Jamie Kelty was born in Germany and raised on a farm in Kansas. Growing up in a rural setting, she developed a strong connection to the earth and to the hand-made. A semester in New Mexico during undergraduate study, opened up the world of painting to her. In 1992, she received a BFA in painting from Fort Hays State University in Kansas. Jamie has taught art to students of all ages in schools, art centers, shelters, and museums. She has exhibited in a number of gallery shows in New York, Kansas, Missouri, Colorado, New Zealand, Berlin, San Francisco, and Mexico.