The 15 best student artists: Kristen Jones

Fifteen artists were chosen to share their stories in our special issue, created to showcase some of Temple’s most passionate and creative on-campus talent.

(Kali Wyrosdic TTN)

Year: Senior
Major: Sculpture and Art Education

Colorful blocks strung along lengths of plastic tubing make up Kristen Jones’ latest piece. The large-scale version of a doctor’s waiting room toy invites anyone to come and play.

Jones, a senior sculpture and art education major, enjoys when her audience can interact with her art.

Jones dabbles in sculpting, glass and printmaking, runs track, works for the Tyler Admissions Office and serves as a track camp counselor in the summer. After graduation, she looks forward to coaching track and teaching art to high school students.

“I like paying attention to the kids [who] especially don’t necessarily think that they have the best of abilities because they have the best of something – they just don’t know what it is yet,” Jones said.
Jones has a different way of using materials. Last year, she welded a metal dance party tent.

“It’s always been interesting to me to see how the public views sculpture because some people think of it as more like the traditional materials being used,” she said.

Jones is currently working on a soft sculpture that she’ll be stuffing.

“It’s like a kid toy, only enlarged,” Jones said.

She will fabricate a brightly colored, multi-sized stack of rings. The rings will be made of fabric, stuffed and stacked on a post.

“I’ve always loved art,” Jones said. “I’ve always done art since I was little. It was something I was kind of drawn to.”

She draws inspiration from her recent trip to Rome. At first, it was difficult not knowing the area or the language. But by the end of her stay, Jones made work that was inspired by the places she visited.

Jones received a partial track scholarship and ran for Temple for two years. Though the schedules can be rigorous, Jones said she encourages students interested in art and sports to pursue both.

“It taught me a lot about being a student-athlete and what a student-athlete goes through,” Jones said. “There aren’t many artists who are athletes as well.”

Jones has always admired knowledgeable teachers who could recommend three or four artists she would be interested in. It is her goal to be just as helpful to teach her future students.

“As a teacher, I feel it’s really important if I’m looking at my students’ work, to be able to be like, ‘OK, they’re working like this person, I’ll recommend people to them,’” she said. “To me, that is key [to expanding] their knowledge.”

Kali Wyrosdic can be reached at

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