“Every Drop Counts” at 2016 Bioneers Conference, San Rafael, CA


My interactive wall installation titled “Every Drop Counts” is now up at the 2016 Bioneers Conference, Marin Center Exhibit Hall, San Rafael, California. This installation is part of the WEAD Women Eco Artist Dialog (www.weadartists.org) exhibition at the Bioneers annual conference about environmental issues. See the website about the conference at http://conference.bioneers.org

My installation at the 2016 Bioneers conference will be on view to the public Oct. 20-23, 2016,  at the Marin Center, San Rafael, CA.


The hundreds of handmade paper water drops for the installation were created in a papermaking workshop I offered at Laney College on Oct. 11 with students in the Eco Art Matters class of Andree Thompson and Sharon Siskin. The blue water drops are made from recycled blue jean pulp, and there are seeds for blue wildflowers in the pulp.  Visitors are invited to make a pledge to save water and then take a “drop” from the installation home with them to plant, water and watch it grow over time.

This installation differs each time it is installed according to the site and the public participation and interaction. It was first created in 2008 during my residency at Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts in Taipei, Taiwan, and also shown also at Tenri Gallery, NYC, in 2010, and in Geneva, Switzerland at the 2015 International Paper/Fiber Biennial.

“Every Drop Counts’ will also be in an exhibition at Laney College, Oakland, CA, later, and I will post information about that exhibition on this Blog.  The installation in San Rafael, CA at the 2016 Bioneers Conference is up through Oct. 23. These photos are by my husband Timothy S. Allen (http://allentimphotos2.wordpress.com)

Laney College Art Class Helps Make Paper for my installation at Bioneers Conference


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It was great to have the help of students at Laney College, Oakland, CA, to make paper for my eco art installation at the 2016 Bioneers Conference in San Rafael, CA, at the Marin Center Oct. 20-23. My art installation is part of the WEAD exhibition (www.weadartists.org) at this environmental art conference.


On Tuesday Oct. 11, the students in the Laney College Eco-Art Matters class made many sheets of blue handmade paper using pulp from old blue jeans. The blue pulp also has seeds for blue wildflowers in it, and the students will shape the blue seeded paper into hundreds of water drops to install on a wall at the Bioneers environmental conference. Thanks to the class instructors Andree Thompson and Sharon Siskin and to all the students who helped with this installation.

My installation is called “Every Drop Counts” and aims to raise awareness about the importance of conserving water.  Visitors at the conference will be invited to take a drop from the installation and make a pledge to conserve water.
Here are some photos taken by my husband Timothy S. Allen at Laney College on Tuesday October 11 during the papermaking activity.

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You can see more photos of the papermaking activity at Laney College on the Facebook page for the Eco Art Matters class: https://www.facebook.com/EcoArtMatters/photos/np.1476320268070018.661280169/1238247529559234/?type=3&theater
Check back here later for photos of my “Every Drop Counts” installation at the Marin Center, San Rafael, CA, during the 2016 Bioneers conference Oct. 20-23, 2016.

Eco-Art Project in San Francisco at 2016 Bioneers Conference


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I am doing an environmental art installation here in the SF area as an exhibiting artist for the 2016 Bioneers Conference (http://conference.bioneers.org)
to be held Oct. 21-23 at the Marin Center, San Rafael, California. I will present an interactive installation called “Every Drop Counts”. For the 2016 Bioneers conference, the WEAD (Women Eco Artists Dialog) organization (www.weadartists.org) is organizing an art exhibition about “Reciprocity” with an environmental theme showing how art can contribute to more public awareness of environmental issues such as water conservation.


I will go to Laney College, Oakland, on Tuesday, October 11 to work with the art class “Eco Art Matters” to create hundred of handmade paper “drops” using blue paper pulp made from old blue jeans and other recycled paper with seeds for blue wildflowers in the pulp. At the 4 days of the Bioneers Conference Oct. 21-23 at the Marin Center, San Rafael, the installation will be displayed and visitors invited to make a pledge to conserve water and take a “drop” from the installation home with them to plant and water until it transforms into blue wildflowers….or save the “drop” on the refrigerator to remind them to conserve water. Lack of water is one of the most pressing problems in northern California in the last few years because of prolonged drought and global warming effects.
Water is a concern all over the world, and this installation has been shown in several other venues…it has been in a NYC gallery, in a gallery in Geneva, Switzerland, as well as at a university gallery in Taiwan. This will be its debut in California with new drops being made at the Laney College class and maintained during the conference by Laney College students and the two art professors (Andree Thompson and Sharon Siskin).

Here are some photos of the installation in New York City at Tenri Gallery in 2009 and in Geneva, Switzerland at the Villa Dutoit, for the Paper/Fiber Art Biennial in 2016.

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Check back here to see more photos of the papermaking workshop at Laney College on Oct. 11 and also to see the installation of “Every Drop Counts” at the 2016 Bioneers Conference in San Rafael, Oct. 21-23, 2016.

Revisiting my Artwork “Falling Water” installed at Gaslight Brasserie, Boston, MA


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During my visit to Boston this year for my residency at Boston Harbor Islands National Park, I had a chance to go by and see my artwork “Falling Water” installed at Gaslight Brasserie, 560 Harrison Avenue, Boston, MA (http://www.gaslight560.com). This restaurant is open for dinner 5-11PM every day and brunch on Saturdays and Sundays 11AM – 3 PM. Café Green Light, also in the same building is open for lunch only . My artwork is installed on one of the really tall walls inside where the Café’ Green Light is located, but you can also be see my artwork from the dinner dining area of the Gaslight restaurant.

“Falling Water” was created in 2007-08 during my artist in residency at Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts, Taipei, Taiwan, and exhibited in my solo exhibition “Water Works” at Boston Sculptors Gallery, 486 Harrison Avenue, Boston, in July 2009. The artwork was purchased by the restaurant and building owners from that show for installation at the Gaslight restaurant space. It was wonderful to see what a great job they did moving the artwork from the Boston Sculptors Gallery where it was suspended from the ceiling to create this great wall installation at Gaslight. We also had a chance to take a photo of the installation, posted here. Thanks to my husband Timothy S. Allen for taking the photo(http://allentimphotos2.wordpress.com).

“Falling Water” was also exhibited in New York City at Tenri Gallery and at Mass Audubon Visual Arts Center, Canton, MA.

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Jane’s Art Installed at Boston Harbor Islands National Park Welcome Center, Long Wharf, Boston, MA


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I am back in Santa Rosa, California now after almost two months on the East Coast.  It was great to see things in Boston and New York City, but also nice to be back in California.  I wanted to share some additional photos of my handmade paper artwork installed in Boston.  Please see my previous posts for more about the process and how this artwork was created on Peddock’s Island, Boston Harbor Islands National Park.

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During my August 17 – 25, 2016, Artist in Residency Project at Boston Harbor Islands National Park, Peddock’s Island, I created a handmade paper artwork that is now installed at the Boston Harbor Islands Welcome Center on Long Wharf. Jane created this artwork “For the Birds of Peddock’s Island” with handmade paper from invasive plants on Peddock’s Island (Common reed, Oriental Bittersweet Vine and Japanese Honeysuckle Vine). The handmade paper birds in this artwork were created by many public participants during a weekend workshop on Peddock’s Island. The birds in the artwork represent 6 endangered species of water birds on Peddock’s Island (Lesser Tern, Double-crested Cormorant, American Oystercatcher, Great Egret, Spotted Sandpiper and Black-crowned Night Heron). This artwork will remain on view at the Islands Welcome Center, and it can be seen up close when the Center is open during the day and at night through the large lighted glass window. Thanks again to the wonderful volunteers who helped with the papermaking on Peddock’s Island and to the many visitors who came to participate in the public activities and contributed their handmade paper birds to this installation artwork for the Boston Harbor Now Foundation and the Boston Harbor Islands National and State Park.

These photos are by my husband Timothy S. Allen (allentimphotos2.wordpress.com).

Finished Installation of Artwork for Boston Harbor Islands National Park


During my final three days as an artist-in residence on Peddock’s Island, I put together the finished artwork for installation at the Boston Harbor Island Welcome Center, Long Wharf in downtown Boston. The site chosen for the art installation is a large window space that allows visitors to see the artwork from both directions and at all times of the day or night. It can be viewed from the street outside the Welcome Center even if the Center is not open. During the office hours the Center is opened up and people can see the artwork from both sides. This window space is about 9 feet long and 3 feet high, and the artwork is suspended from the ceiling a few inches away from the glass so that a black window screen can be pulled down at night. It is an interesting site for the artwork about Peddock’s Island Birds and made with handmade paper from invasive plants, created with public participation by visitors to Peddock’s Island.

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I put the piece together inside the chapel on Peddock’s Island.  I had to choose from the more than 160 handmade paper birds to put together the finished artwork. Some of the left over birds will be used for other smaller pieces and to give to the volunteers and participants.  Many of the handmade paper birds were made by public participants in the weekend papermaking workshops I held on Peddock’s Island August 20 and 21.

The handmade paper birds were laid out on plastic sheeting so as not to harm the tables, and I used natural cotton string in brown, beige and natural colors to join the bird shapes creating a sort of net-like background for the piece. The birds represented in this artwork are all water birds (herons, egrets, cormorants, sandpipers, oystercatchers, and terns) found along the shores of the islands, and I also used some goose feathers (they have many Canadian geese living near the chapel on Peddock’s) and leaves, wildflowers and other found natural objects from Peddock’s Island in the finished artwork. I used acrylic matte gel as a glue to put everything together glueing the string across the handmade paper birds and attaching the wildflowers, leaves, feathers, etc.

Then when the gel dried I peeled the whole piece off the plastic with the interwoven threads holding it all together.   I had to pick out some of the excess gel in the negative spaces since I wanted the artwork to be as transparent as possible so that light could come through it in the window space.  The gel also makes the handmade paper and natural string piece more lasting and gives it a UV protectant.  The artwork is an irregular organic shape and has thread loops at the top to hang easily from ceiling hooks.


On August 25 at Long Wharf I participated in the celebrations for the 100th anniversary of America’s National Parks.  I had the finished handmade paper artwork created during my residency hanging in a tent booth there and samples of the birds and the handmade paper made from invasive plants.  It was great to talk with visitors there about the artist in residency project on Peddock’s Island.

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These photos show the installation going up at the Welcome Center for the Boston Harbor Islands near Long Wharf in Boston. Thanks to volunteer Bob Marcus and my husband Tim for their great help in getting the piece hung in the window space. We only had about 45 minutes to do the installation since they were due to close up the Welcome Center at 5 PM.  These photos were taken by Tim very late in the day with the sun low in the sky behind the window, so I hope we can go back one morning to get more photos in a different light.  Also, the Park staff will be putting up a sign to identify this artwork and tell a little about how it was made.


I have also completed the Peddock’s Island handmade paper recipe book that gives information about making paper from three invasive plants:  Phragmites or common reed leaves, Oriental Bittersweet Vine bark and Bell’s Honeysuckle vine bark.  This book will be left at the Boston Harbor Islands National Park Welcome Center too.

Thanks again to the volunteers, the park rangers, Carolyn Lewenberg who was the Artist in Residency coordinator, and the staff at Boston Harbor Now for all their help and support during this residency project.  I really enjoyed this experience being the first artist-in-residence at Boston Harbor Islands National Park, and I hope that the program will continue with all sorts of artists working on the islands to make art there that can enhance viewers experiences and inspire people to preserve the harbor islands for future generations.

Papermaking Workshops on Peddock’s Island, Boston Harbor Islands National Park

As part of my artist-in-residency project at Boston Harbor Islands National Park, I conducted public participation workshops on August 20 and 21 for making handmade paper birds using invasive plant pulps. Many people visiting Peddock’s Island participated and created about 160 handmade paper birds representing endangered bird species on Peddock’s Islands. The birds that people made will be used for the large installation artwork to be installed at the Boston Harbor Islands Welcome Center at Long Wharf in Boston. People participating had the experience of stripping the bark, beating the cooked and washed pulp material, forming sheets in the shape of 6 bird species and decorating each one individually with natural materials such as feathers, wildflowers and leaves found on Peddock’s Island. The workshops were held outdoors at a temporary papermaking studio just outside the chapel. The three invasive plants of Peddock’s Island that we used for the papermaking included honeysuckle vine bark, oriental bittersweet vine bark and common reed leaves. The endangered bird species represented in the handmade paper birds included cormorants, great egrets, night herons, spotted sandpipers, least terns and American oystercatchers.

These photographs show the public papermaking workshops on Peddock’s Island Saturday, August 20,

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These photos show the public papermaking activities on Sunday August 21, at Peddock’s Island.

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Thank you to the many people who participated in these papermakiing sessions and helped with the first artist-in-residency project at Boston Harbor Islands Naitonal Park.

I would like also to give a big thank you to the great volunteers who helped visitors with the papermaking activities. Volunteers on Saturday and Sunday included Bob and Kristina Marcus, Joyce Tat, Christine Tinsley, and Chris and Rebecca Allen and their friend Amy. Thank you also to the artist in residency coordinator Carolyn Lewenberg and all the rangers and park foundation staff who helped with this project. The photos for documenting this artist in residency project are by my husband Timothy S. Allen (http://allentimphotos2.wordpress.com).

Check back here to see the creation of the finished artwork “Birds of Peddock’s Island” as I put together all those handmade paper birds on August 22 – 24. The 100th anniversary celebration for our national parks is on August 25 at Long Wharf, and I will be there 2-4 PM with a tent display to show people what I did during the
residency on Paddock’s Island.

Boston Harbor Islands Artist in Residency Continues

Here are some photos of the papermaking activities on Friday August 19 for my Artist in Residency project on Peddock’s Island at Boston Harbor Islands National Park.

IMG_01371 IMG_01402 IMG_01413 IMG_01494 IMG_01505 IMG_01526 IMG_01567 IMG_9957-28 IMG_9961-29 IMG_9962-210 IMG_9964-211On Friday, August 19, we made paper from the invasive plant on Peddock’s Island called Oriental Bittersweet. It is a vine originally from Asia that is wrapping around trees and in general making itself very invasive on the islands.

Another volunteer Christine also came to help with the papermaking, and Bob also joined us for the day of preparing pulp from invasive species and making some bird shaped paper forms that will be used in the finished installation piece to be displayed on Thursday August 25 in Christopher Columbus Park near Long Wharf in Boston for the 100th anniversary of the national parks. I will have a tent there in the park and be there from 2-4 PM that day.

Keep watching the Blog to see more photos of the papermaking activities on Peddock’s Island.
Photos are by Timothy S. Allen (allentimphotos2.wordpress.com

2nd Day of Boston Harbor Islands Artist in Residency Project

The second day, Thursday August 18, two volunteers came out to help with making paper from local invasive plants on Peddock’s Island.  We picked some invasive Bittersweet vine to make paper.  It was great to have volunteers, Joyce Tat and Bob Marcus, helping with the project.
Here are some photos of the papermaking activities on the second day of the residency project.

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Thanks to the great volunteers and also to my husband Timothy S. Allen for taking all the photos. We will keep posting photos and updates about the project.
Public Open Studios will be this weekend August 20 and 21, and we hope to make lots of handmade paper birds representing the endangered species on the Islands. Come join the fun if you are in the Boston area and take the ferry to Peddock’s Island.

First Day of Artist in Residency Project at Peddock’s Island

August 17 was the first day of my artist in residency project at Peddock’s Island, Boston Harbor Islands National Park. Joyce, who is a recent graduate from Montserrat College of Art in Beverly MA, came to volunteer for the papermaking AIR art project, and we started preparing some Phragmites (Common Reed) leaves and made samples and tried out some of the stencils I created to make paper in the shape of some of the endangered bird species found on Peddock’s Island.
The Phragmites paper turned out really strong and sturdy and a nice golden brown color, even though it looks green when the pulp is wet! Two other volunteers will be coming to help on Thursday and Friday to prepare pulp from other invasive plants.

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On Saturday and Sunday, August 20 and 21 the public will be invited to participate in the papermaking activities and hopefully we can create hundreds of handmade paper birds to include in the finished installation that will be ready by next Thursday, August 25 for the celebration in honor of the 100th anniversary of our national parks. I will have a booth for this celebration at Christopher Columbus Park and be there from 2-4PM on Thursday, August 25.

Check back here in a few days to see more photos of the artist in residency project on Peddock’s Island. The photos are taken by my husband Timothy S. Allen. To see more of his photos check his Blog at http://allentimphotos2.wordpress.com