The speed and precision of the table saw, the tool I use the most, supports my style of working which is fast and somewhat aggressive. I try to capture the energy of an idea before it fades. Hand tools, although romantic, are usually avoided as I find them slow (or my skills are not sufficient) and I don’t get the results in the time I want. My desire is to create art and functional furniture pieces that engage sometimes with concept, sometimes with form, sometimes both, but are always aesthetically pleasing and with successful proportions.
The intent of my work is to show the duality of an object or event, to deal with subject matter that considers different perspectives being equally strong and equally weak, equally good and equally bad. Accepting that all things have a strength and a weakness, I can realize the empathy that is needed for me to understand that which I find difficult. If there is friendship, there is loneliness. If there are bad choices, there are good ones. If there is love, there is hate. I create works with very strong lines, sharp edges and angles and contrast that with the organic round shapes of wood rocks that I make or soft materials like shearling. I use personal experiences of my own, and others who share their stories with me, to show there is always more than one side to a situation.
Jill Kyong grew up in northern Minnesota where she watched her dad build furniture. She took all the wood shop classes she could in high school, even though her teacher questioned, as a girl, if she really wanted to be there. Jill received her BFA degree from the University of Minnesota in sculpture, focusing on metal casting. Since then, she has been distracted by living in various places and by family. She spent five years teaching woodworking classes at the Arkansas Art Center in Little Rock before she moved to Idaho with her husband. She has two grown kids, and it was their recent departure from home that prompted Jill to pursue making art again.