Jacobs is an American artist known for her lyrical yet minimal canvases that
engage both with the natural world and late 20th-century minimalism. After she
started painting outdoors, first in the forests of Colorado and then in the
woods of Massachusetts, she decided to use tree bark as the surface for her
works. Working with raw linen or canvas, Jacobs wraps and re-wraps the material
on multiple tree trunks. It is then subjugated to various gessoes and rubs and
left to absorb the influences of weather patterns and the trees' evolution.
These paintings are left outdoors for as long as two years, allowing them to
weather and mature, creating a unique surface. In the last phase, the artist
moves these aged paintings back into the studio, painting and reworking the
marks begun by her and taken up by her environment. Kathleen Jacobs attended
Pine Manor College in Boston before relocating to Milan in 1980 to study
graphic design at the Scuola Politecnica di Design (SPD). She lives and works
in Great Barrington, MA.