Sarah E. Jenkins

Assistant Professor of Animation, Creative Arts, and Visual Culture

Sarah E. Jenkins (they/she) is a queer Appalachian artist and experimental animator from central Pennsylvania.

Their recent work explores extraction, hidden labors, and disappearance via both in-studio and site-responsive stop motion animation. Their work has been exhibited at the Museum of Fine Art Boston, ICA/Boston, Emerson Contemporary, and the Torrance Art Museum. In 2023, the Ciné Culture Series at Massachusetts College of Art and Design offered a screening retrospective of Jenkins’ moving image work. Jenkins's work has also been screened with The Lesbian and Gay Association in Germany, Wonzimer, and at independent theaters including the Brattle Theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and the Coolidge Corner Theater in Brookline, Massachusetts. Jenkins’s residencies include MacDowell, the Sitka Center for Art and Ecology, and the Santa Fe Art Institute’s 2023 Thematic Residency: Changing Climate. There will be a six-month solo exhibition of Jenkins’ work at the Boston Children’s Museum opening September 2023. Their work is included in the forthcoming book Queering Appalachia's Visual History: A Collection of Queer Appalachian Photographers, University of Kentucky Press (2024).

When she isn’t teaching or making art, Jenkins spends time taking meandering walks around Northampton with her adventure cat, Nessie.

Personal Website

Recent and Upcoming Courses

  • Animation is an art of transformation, of metamorphosis, of amalgamation. Animation is both anti-technology and hyper digital. Animation is subversive, magical, and expansive. In this course, students will be introduced to an array of foundational animation ideas and techniques. Students will gain hands-on experience with stop motion animation, hand drawn animation, 2d digital animation, sound recording, and hybrid analog/digital techniques. The course will include screenings and discussion, technical demos, studio work, and critique. We will use the following gear and software: Digital cameras, smartphones, sound recorders, Dragon Frame, Adobe Premiere, Animate, and Photoshop. Animation can be a time-consuming process, please plan to spend at least 8 hours per week working outside of class. Some weeks this will be less, often it will be more. Students will need an external hard drive for this course.

  • Octavia E Butler's Earthseed science fiction series envisioned a future devastated by climate change, wealth disparity, violence, and political injustice. Published in 1993, Parable of the Sower places us in a dystopian 2024, where we follow the journey of Lauren Oya Olamina, a black teenage girl with hyper-empathy syndrome and an idea for a new religion called Earthseed. In this hybrid seminar/studio course, we will begin with a reading and analysis of Butler's Parable of the Sower (1993) and Parable of the Talents (1998). Afterwards, students will imagine & create animated projects that conceptually tie to the themes present in Octavia E Butler's work, including afrofuturism, climate change, and political injustice. This course is limited to Division II and III students. Students should have a working knowledge of Dragon Frame, Premiere Pro, Sound recording, and traditional or digital 2D animation. Expect to spend 8-12 hours per week outside of class time. Students will need an external hard drive for this course Keywords: Octavia E Butler, Animation, Science Fiction

  • This course explores the possibilities of animation outside the confines of the traditional studio. We will screen & discuss experimental and nontraditional works that explore pixelation, outdoor animation, site-responsive animation, and hybrid approaches to moving image art. In addition to reading, writing, and discussion, students will work collaboratively to create their own animations in the wild. Please note that we will be working outside in this course Keywords: animation, moving image, art

  • This course will take students through a comprehensive history of animated films, artists, and processes, beginning with pre-film animation devices of the 1800s and moving into the current millennium. Students will reflect upon the ways that animation intersects with social issues, politics, cultural ideas, and technological innovation across time and geography. We will cover both independent practices and commercial studios, with a breadth of genres and styles of work that includes both traditional narrative animation and art that questions how we define animation in the first place. Keywords:Animation, History, Film, Media The content of this course deals with issues of race and power.

  • Experimental 2D Animation is a course that focuses on experimental strategies for a variety of 2D animation techniques. Experimental animations may be non-narrative, abstract, and/or difficult to define. They may be created with techniques that reimagine or revolt against traditional animation studio practices. In the course, we will cover a breadth of introductory and Intermediate 2D animation techniques, including analog hand drawn animation, digital hand drawn animation, digital puppetry, and compositing. We will also cover sound recording and design for experimental animation. Students will need an external hard drive for this course. Animation is a time-consuming art form. Expect to work a minimum of 8 hours outside of class time every week Keywords:Animation, History, Film, Media

  • This course focuses on the hybrid and transdisciplinary possibilities of digital moving image production. In this digital studio, 2d animation, video, still images, and sound collide. Projects will be idea-driven, with prompts that encourage critical analysis and reflection. Technique and concept are inherently linked, and we will explore the layered meanings of moving image works with curiosity and a critical lens. Multiple digital techniques will be introduced, including video capture and editing, sound recording, compositing, 2d animation, and hybrid processes. In addition to technical demos and studio work, we will screen and discuss artists working across moving image production. We will use the following gear and software: Digital cameras, smartphones, sound recorders, Adobe Premiere, After Effects, Animate, and Photoshop. Animation can be a time-consuming process. Keywords:Animation, digital art, transdisciplinary, video, digital media