JODI BOATMAN (b. 1976)

Myrtle and George by Jodi Boatman – from the series Still Very Small and Dirty.  2006. Silver gelatin prints behind plexi-glass, 16.75” W X 22” T

Artist’s Statement

Still Very Small and Dirty

In the project Still Very Small and Dirty, I am interested in using elements of kitsch combined with technology and persona to create images that address simulation in culture and our interactions with one another.  In my research into kitsch and nostalgia I have become increasingly interested with the production/ consumption of objects as a means to define emotion or euphoria. I have chosen objects to work with, gendered animal salt and pepper shakers from the 60’s and 70’s, as a way to draw upon nostalgia. They are at times coy and charming, grotesque and dirty.  They lack depth and are noticeably not well crafted, which adds to their disposable nature. They are marked with a patina of datedness, reminding me of my grandmother’s house or Sunday dinners at my aunt Lula’s, tangible memories and associations.

I see a connection between notions of kitsch and the increasing need for a cyber identity. There has become a fissure between the corporeal public body we inhabit and an internalized private mind.  Our interactions and communications through chat rooms, online dating websites and blogs become the outlet for a passive communication that relies on a textualized and often shorthand version of thought which permits easy access.

It is in my interest to collect memories like objects that the second strand of thought in the project exists. I have been thinking lately about online dating services and reality television shows with a dating theme, their attractions and risks.  Can memories with associations or place be formed with only the object of a computer to interact with? Is there a possibility to find more than kitsch, emotion without thought, in these methods for finding a mate or is there only sentimentality? What’s more absurd, our gravitation towards these interactions or the creation of a website designated to finding new matches for salt and pepper shaker’s that have lost their partner?


Columbus, Ohio-based artist and educator Jodi Boatman carries an extensive knowledge of alternative and no-silver photo processes, digital imaging, and large format photography. Jodi holds a BFA in Media Studies from the Columbus College of Art and Design, and received her MFA from Michigan’s Cranbrook Academy of Art with a specialization in Photography.

Ms. Boatman’s work has been exhibited and reviewed widely including at Chicago’s Links for the International Promotion of the Arts, in Philadelphia at Vox Populi Gallery, at the Myers Gallery in Tulsa, OK, and the Newspace in Portland, Oregon.   As an educator, Jodi served as an Assistant Professor of Photography in Ohio University’s School of Art for more than 5-years.  She is currently working as both a studio artist, and commercial photographer in Columbus, Ohio. Her book “This will be a long lonely year ” was published in 2008 and is available on both Amazon and Of her book she writes: “It is the thought of loss that keeps me cataloging, tracing and re-tracing my steps. I catch myself staring at the freckles on a man’s eyelids or the matted texture of a worn carpet, remembering. It is the eventual loss of these moments that I dread. I am searching for a meaningful and profound connection to my past. Through the use of the photograph I hope to comprehend my fixation with failed relationships, childhood dwellings and the death of my paternal Grandmother: all themes that perpetually bind me to the past. This work is about self-exposure, misunderstanding and failures.”

Artists website:

Interview – Untapped Talent: Jodi Boatman

This Will Be A Long and Lonely Year by Jodi Boatman, with forward by Alexandra Hibbet:
Available on

Pacific Postcards – mixed media by Jodi Boatman, 2008 – a gift from the artist


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s