Follow the header from left to right starting at "Refuge for Queer Being," to view her works chronologically. This website showcases the past 7 years of making with a focus in her college and post-grad years.
Jenna Tessler "Jay" (she/her/they) is a practicing photographer who resides in Oakland, California. She completed her degrees in the spring of 2021, earning a B.F.A in Photography and a minor in Expressive Art Therapy from Lesley University.
In 2023, Jenna traveled around working in and being a visiting artist at residencies and education centers such as- HCA (Headlands Center for the Arts) Sausalito, CA, Photo Center NW, Seattle, WA, and Alchemy Art Center Friday Harbor Island, WA.
Independently, she also works in freelance as a personal archivist, artist assistant, and event photographer.
Jenna has passions to merge the practices of fine art photography and art therapy and contribute to the emerging "photo therapy" field. As an educator, she aims to help people realize their inherent creativity and reclaim the title "Artist." Her teaching uses the rules of fine art as suggestion rather than prescription. This gives agency back to the maker, carving out space for experimentation, authenticity, and intuitive sensory-driven making.
Recently, Jenna taught two original classes, "Writing & Photography," & "Mindfulness-based Photography," as part of her visiting artist residency at Alchemy (October '23). She hopes to teach them again in other contexts.
Currently- Jenna is a photography A-I-R (artist in resident) at Kala Art Institute in Berkeley, CA. She is working to complete the first book of it's kind (to their knowledge) that highlights and offers perspective on the sibling experience to someone with a disability.
Photograph made in Seattle's Seward Park by Anna Morris