Jeli Stankovic (they/them) defines themselves as a maximalist. Their work - through concept or process - focuses on the ideas of scarcity and abundance: a scarcity of materials consumed, a celebration of abundance created. They are interested in folklore, storytelling, gender identity, queerness, and the body as it exists in social contexts and in relationship to the earth. Their work consists primarily of salvaged, scavenged, and sustainable materials in order to pull at the threads or our personal and collective narratives.
The healer’s apron places the weight of this instinct on whoever wears it. Both of the aprons that make up the piece tie around the body several times, demanding a closeness between the textiles and the wearer, binding them together. The inner apron fills with materials gathered and the weight of the forged materials forces the wearer to consider their relationship to the land and what they take. With it, the wearer is bound to protect the traditional knowledge stored within the apron, which can so easily slip away from us, like slips of paper fall out of our pocket when we reach for something else.
"The Pollen Exchange" is an altar cloth, a space of conversation. Yellow is an easy exchange – it attracts pollinators and catches our eyes. It gives its pigment freely. Woven, sewn, and marked with plant names in Cyrillic, it is a place of exchange – of time and energy and concentration. There are many layers of natural pigment – goldenrod, marigold, onion skin, pomegranate skin – imbued and altered in the cloth but the real purpose of an altar cloth is what will be given when it’s approached. What’s left on the surface will over time, with rain and sun, give its pigment to the cloth. The sun will fade it. A bee will drop some pollen, maybe it will pick some up.