Masters Award Receipent Jen Torres
The Masters Award is bestowed upon an established sculptor who exhibits a significant influence and stature within the arts community. This award is not annual, instead is only bestowed by MSA to recognize the distinguished career of an artist, the merit of their work, and their importance as a mentor in a given region. MSA is delighted to announce Jen Torres as the recipient of the MSA Masters Award, underscoring her accomplishments and dedication to the field of sculpture and her role as a mentor.
Jen is an open, warm, and passionate sculptor. Her studio is full of years of explorations into crafting "weirdo children" out of wood and cast metals. Her large-scale public work includes "Homes for Everyone," a series of abstracted houses made from stainless steel created for the Art on the Atlanta Beltline. Jen's recent Garden Boat commission for Osage Park in Bentonville, Arkansas displays her adept use of line and form as well as mastery over the notoriously challenging material of stainless steel. Combining high craft and imagination, Jen's pieces often have a quirky, lively attitude that welcomes the viewer much as she does. Jen's work at USM is to encourage her students to experiment with materials and process. Torres has grown the program with constant improvements to the 3D studios through grant writing, individual mentoring of students and professionals, and welcoming visiting artists to the program. She spearheads an annual outdoor sculpture exhibit that allows students to understand the complications and benefits of large-scale sculpture installations and exhibitions. Additionally, Jen has kept the iron furnace running each semester and connects students to opportunities outside of Hattiesburg. Torres' impact in the Mid-South region is undeniable and we are thrilled to recognize her this year at Confab.