Jean Marie Cate.


Edited by Bee Tomlinson

What is your idea of perfect happiness?
I’m not sure I have experienced perfect happiness. I suppose it would involve magnification of those brief and fleeting moments of ecstatic elation and joy.

What is your motto?
It is not exactly a motto: the poem One Art by Elizabeth Bishop.

What is your current state of mind?
A bit frayed.

How would you like to die?
It would please me if my death was neat, tidy and efficient. I’m not particularly concerned with the particulars. It would be wonderful if it was in a manner that would least upset the friends and family I may leave behind.

What is it that you love most about what you do?
Having the opportunity to share, manifest and communicate my logic, philosophies, aesthetic, and work.

If you could have a conversation with anybody (alive or dead), who would it be?
I would be interested in having a conversation with my unconscious / subconscious / primordial self.

When did you realize that you wanted to be a creative?
I started making seriously when I was 16. It was a revelation! I suddenly had this mode of communication that I understood and could use far more freely and intuitively than words.

What motivates you?
There is a poem by Mark Strand called Keeping Things Whole. The last two lines read: “I move to keep things whole.” I make and create work, problems, things to grow and care for in order to occupy, move, propel myself “forward.” I strive to create beautiful, transcendent, true things and spaces to.

What do you love about being a woman?
So much of being a woman is a construct imposed upon you by others. A lens in which others view you. I’m not particularly interested in that construct or those views. What I love and embrace is the kinship, friendship and deep bonds I share with other women.

What is your experience of being a woman, while also being a creative?
I view making as a means of empowerment.

I would be interested in having a conversation with my unconscious / subconscious / primordial self.