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Back Talk with Jenn Porreca

Juxtapoz // Thursday, 14 Jan 2010

The day before NYC’s Opera Gallery unveils her latest work, we threw a few questions (well, twenty to be exact) her way. Find out why she wishes she could run away with the circus and what she’s talking about when referring “the ritual before the ritual.”

Today, I feel:
like wearing warm socks.

If you had three wishes, what would they be?

To wear red slippers like Dorothy (they would work when you click them), to run away with the circus, and live in an Antonio Gaudi type house; it would be by the ocean and have a view from the kitchen.  Is this too much to ask?


Do you consider yourself a funny person?

Sometimes when I’m around my close friends.  Maybe not funny like a clown though, more like weird funny, strange funny.  

If you had one magic power, what would it be?

To close my eyes and imagine the world around me being a certain way or looking a certain way, and then open them and have it changed without lifting a finger.  I would spend my days changing the color of my walls, hair, flowers, shoes, carpets, sky.

Something that makes you happy?
Puppies, new paintbrushes, being inspired and inspiring other people.

Something that makes you mad?

People that don’t say please and thank you, bad breath.


What was your favorite subject in elementary school?


If you feel a creative block, what do you do to jumpstart inspiration?
Put the phone and laptop away, rest, watch movies, and cook.  It’s all about the ritual before the ritual.

When someone is taking a photo, do you smile for the camera or turn your head?

Depends on if I’ve had a drink or not.


Are you a social network enthusiast? (eg Do you post photos on Facebook; listen to music on MySpace; post to YouTube, etc?)

When your family lives half way around the world it helps to have a place to share what’s going on.  Not sure that I’d call myself an “enthusiast” – these days my phone is linked up to all that stuff, so snapping a picture and posting it is pretty easy for me.   

What is a quality you don’t like about yourself?

My nails are always dirty with paint or lead from pencils – not all that pretty.  Oh – and I don’t sleep.

Last good book you read?
“What French Women Know”

Who has had the most impact on your life?

Mike Boo.


Are you spiritual?
Yes I believe in these things…

One word to describe your artwork?
Because I never thought I would be living such a charmed existence, I would have to say “unexpected.”

What’s missing in your life?
Health insurance, sleep, warm socks, another boston terrier.

Are you a pet person?

Is your artwork understood?
Sometimes.  I think it’s interesting that the pieces that frustrate me are the ones that people like the most.   On being understood, I’m not so sure that was ever my goal was to be understood.


The most trouble you’ve ever gotten into:

Ahhhh, this is a question best answered over a cocktail, and even then I might not tell.  It was bad.  

Where do you imagine yourself in five years?

Please see answer #2.


More info on Jenn lives online at




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