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Wendy Jensen holding one of her willow baskets, Basketmaking, 2016; Wendy G Jensen; Monterey, Massachusetts; Willow; Photography by Maggie Holtzberg
Wendy Jensen holding one of her willow baskets, Basketmaking, 2016
Wendy G Jensen
Monterey, Massachusetts
Photography by Maggie Holtzberg
Quatrefoil urn; Basketmaking; 2016: Monterey, Massachusetts
Examples of Wendy Jensen's baskets; Basketmaking; 2016: Monterey, Massachusetts
Shrub willow and soaking tank; Basketmaking; 2016: Monterey, Massachusetts
loose rattan and baskets; Basketmaking; 2016:
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Wendy G Jensen
Monterey, MA
Wendy G. Jensen is a basketmaker who works in a variety of materials including willow, which she grows and harvests on her property in the Berkshires. She also works with rattan, seagrass, and twilled rush. Early on Jensen studied with several well-known basket makers, including Kari Lonning. Jensen favors utilitarian baskets and experiments with two toned designs. "I kind of can't get away from utilitarian work." Many of her designs are inspired by the basketry of northeast Native Americans and the Shakers. She excels at the mathematical challenge of working out weaving patterns and an endless variety of shapes, while taking pleasure in the usefulness of the finished product.

Jensen's basketmaking studio sits within walking distant of her home on a wooded lot in Monterey, Massachusuetts. The studio was built in 2009 after Wendy and her husband had taken a timber framing workshop from Heartwood Timbercraft. Apprentices studying at the Heartwood School helped design and put up the building. The property is ripe with eight varieties of shrub willow, an oblong tub for soaking willow, and a number of structures that Wendy has woven out of live willow, including a kind of love seat that provides shade for sitting in the vegetable garden. Inside the studio, basket making materials hang free on the back wall, while other materials are stored by width and shape in drawers. Jensen balances alone time working in her studio with teaching small groups of people interested in the craft. Her work is exhibited and sold at her work at craft fairs, sheep and wool festivals, and online.
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