J. Jay West
Combined-media abstract artist
Lives and works in Kamuela, Hawaii
Self portrait, manipulated photograph
Jay West sculpts in a variety of media including glass, fiber, clay, and metal blending the passion for recycling with the creation of one of a kind art. Work stands out amongst the many talented Hawaii artists due to the innovative use of found materials and continuous trials utilizing both traditional and experimental techniques.
Jay has participated in several juried art exhibitions in the last 40 years, winning many awards from first places to honorable mentions. Jay has had multiple solo art shows and has exhibited work in numerous joint and invitational shows in Hawaii and on the mainland.
As the business owner of Peak Creations, Jay was contracted to develop and organize value-added art-related workshops as the first artist-in-residence at the Island of Hawaii's Keaau Recycle & Reuse Center sharing various low-tech solutions to creating functional craft and fine art from discards that would otherwise go into our landfills. Jay founded several manufacturing businesses in the private sector and has been honored as a director on non-profit boards of several art and environmental organizations.
West holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Design from the University of Kansas in Lawrence. Completed the degree with concentration in structural fiber in 1981 and later pursued a long career in the graphics field.
• Artist Statement
“I am a combined-media abstract artist that utilizes 100% recycled materials in most of my work. I have a passion for 3D. I prefer to use recycled glass, paper, wood and metals out of respect for our finite environment.
In the process of transforming mundane objects into things of beauty and meaning I’m captivated by the thrill and subtle twists of vision I am granted. I’m like an explorer on a path never before traveled where every new vista fills me with joy."
• Materials, Processes, and Thoughts
“I look for discarded materials in which I envision a new view of an old idea. Be it abstract in design or impressionistic, each piece is thought out carefully with the final intention planned every stage of the way.
I collect used materials that interest me or for a particular piece, while at other times I collect items for future projects. I often have items in my inventory that I have kept for years. Eventually these resources will come into my vision as elements restructured into an entirely new creation.”
— Jay West