We find meaning in maps because they show relationships between a constellation of landmarks and the routes between them. Akin to cartography, I make art to explore and define relationships. I journey between theory and practice, work and play, entropy and order, process and product, analog and digital. I begin all projects with research and contemplation, especially surveying which materials will help me tell the most compelling story.

While my recent projects span digital media, painting, drawing, and conceptual works, all of them are photographic. Since a 7th grade report on George Eastman, photographic history and theory have been my compass. The qualities inherent to photography consume me, including reproduction, circulation, and the momentum of technology. I pursue the impulse and impossibility of making work that is comprehensive. Most of all, I dwell on photography’s role in personal experience: the tradition of documenting travel and places, the nostalgia of souvenirs, and the residue of memory.


Jess Schwartz is a San Francisco transplant and a Pennsylvania native. From 9 to 5, Jess is a Program Manager with Firebase at Google. The rest of the time, she’s making things (mostly art, food, and plans) and wrapping up her coursework in UC Berkeley's Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Visual Arts. Jess graduated with an A.B. in Growth and Structure of Cities from Bryn Mawr College, an all women’s college near Philadelphia, PA, where she currently serves on the Board of Trustees.