We had the good fortune of connecting with Jenna Balfe and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jenna, what are you inspired by?
I am inspired by relationships. The simple fact that I am alive at this time, with the other people that are alive at this moment is astounding to me. It is a huge source of my inspiration to think of all the different people and situations I may encounter. Many of my narratives for performance are based on actual relationships I have. Often in the process of creating work- the relationships b/w performers end up finishing the stories as well. I will also mention that “Nature” often considered as other from human- is the creative force behind anything that I do. But this is simply because I perceive no difference between myself and nature. Not even when I am indoors and shielded from the sky. It is always with me.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My art practice focuses on human/nature Integrative experience. What led me to this place was going through a difficult childhood where my only escape was to go outside. Over time I came to realize that the out of doors world was what was actually “real”. I could focus on a plant growing through a crack and sort of breath into it, slowly descending into a full experience of the present moment. That is the essence of my work when it’s at its best. Finding ways to create this experience for the viewer is my goal.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Hmmmmmm…… We would start out by going to Mary’s Coin Laundry on 27th ave and get a cafe con leche and a pastelito. The next day we would ride bike around Miami- in any direction- to enjoy the accidental lush plant beauty created by a subtropical climate. All the alleyways and random canals are places where I find the most magic. I love where a previous urban plan meets a later plan and then nature finds her way in to create a vibe particular to Miami. The next day we would get the hell out of here and go camping to a Spring in Central Florida.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My list may be a bit long… But like I said.. people are the truth of my art. My husband Dennis Fuller is my creative partner all the way. In our band- in my performance art and beyond. All the band members of Donzii- Danny Heinze, Monroe Getz, and Miles Hancock and OG member Doug Weber. My close friend and collaborator Tef Baker– an amazing actress has been a gift from the heavens lately in regard to my artistic practice and our band Donzii. Naomi Fisher of the BFI has always guided me through my own artistic process and given me opportunities. John Rubeli of our label Grey Market has been huge to my growth and perseverance. Other amazing collaborators are: Nicole Salcedo- amazing dancer and collaborator, Mauricio Abascal- Director of photography for many projects as well as a collaborator, Janaina Vida Panconesi- artist/dancer and lifelong collaborator Jorge Elbrect- amazing musician and inspiration for Donzii, Shaun Durkan- amazing, producer and musician, who has been working with Donzii on our first full-length album! Yves Verala- amazing musician and Jerry Delince of the label Oniwerks, Jillian Mayer- awesome artist and inspiration, Casey Zap of The Center for Subtropical Affairs, Hernan Bas- rad artist pal, Tate– amazing dancer, and videographer, Liz and Bow- inspiring artist duo, Jacqueline Falcone– excellent curator of the LA Bed and Breakfast and longtime collaborator, Ali Prosch- amazing artist and long time collaborator, Natasha Velez- amazing artist/photgrapher and collaborator for many performance pieces, Cassie Mills, amazing yogi/dancer and collaborator, Ewa Josefsson- amazing yogi and collaborator, Katie Stirman- beautiful dancer and collaborator, Monical Lopez De Victoria-artist and collaborator, Tara Long- rad musician and inspiration, Monica Uszerowicz- writer and lovely collaborator, Gabi Serra- plant friend and collaborator, Esti Brooks- artist and lifetime collaborator and friend, Magnus Sodamin- artist and collaborator, Ashley Smith- artist and collaborator, Pebble Yaffe- awesome creator and collaborator, Daniel Edenburg- a super actor, collaborator and DJ mentor and owner of and amazing record label Terrestrial Funk, Kaylee Nieves- wonderful dancer and collaborator, Domingo Castillo and Patricia Hernandez of The End- amazing inspirations and supporters, Oliver Sanchez of Swampspace gallery, Andrea Knight- awesome musician and collaborator, Javier Hernandez- amazing director and artist, Bhakti Baxter- amazing artist and collaborator, David Bennet- awesome designer, Jessie Bass-amazing dancer/musician and collaborator Elizabeth Hart- amazing dancer/musician and collaborator, Kali Kahn, Claudia Rodriguez and Pamela Largaespada who worked on Donzii’s last music video and of course one of my main collaborator’s amazing artist/mover/life inspiration Misael Soto.
Facebook: Jenna Balfe
Donzii Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/6ezSXwGUhE3a3g6uEr38oU?si=g_LCLy-JTiyaOK5Gr-F4Ew
Donzii Instagram: @_donzii