Textile artist and illustrator, Jamie Bourgeois examines the impacts of human interactions within native ecosystems. Born in Southeast Louisiana, she grew up in a family with a tradition of harvesting resources from the land, in an area now known as the petrochemical corridor or cancer alley. This part of the country, steeped in paradox, is still, and always will be, “home.” Bourgeois’ multi-disciplinary works investigate and highlight the confluence of nature’s tides and man’s industry. She creates utilitarian textiles with a goal to remind and raise awareness of the importance of protecting our native ecosystems. As all geo-systems interconnect, her process for creating these textiles is intentionally low impact, utilizing plants, insects and minerals as her dye sources. Jamie graduated from the Visual Arts program at the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts in 2008. She received a BFA in Fibers from the Savannah College of Art & Design in 2012. Her studio is currently based in Atlanta, Georgia, where she also works as the gallery manager of Spalding Nix Fine Art.
As an artist who advocates for the environment, it is important that my process is analogous to my concepts. I make small batch naturally dyed scarves with the intention of spreading compassion and awareness about the Earth inhabit. All of my work is dyed and printed with natural dyes that I develop in my studio. I grow, locally harvest and sustainably source all of the plants I use. The companies I choose to purchase fabric from have strong environmental and ethical standards. In order to put less waste into the world, every scrap of fabric I purchase is used in some way. My process is slow and intentional, but I hold space for surprises and experimentation. All of my scarves are finished with a hand-rolled hem and packaged in an up-cycled cotton pouch. I pair each scarf with an essay that includes information on how we can mitigate our destructive impacts on our local environments. Because I am in a constant state of work in progress, I am always researching materials and techniques to ensure that I am using the most ethical goods and sustainable processes.