Jen Thomas is a an artist, designer, educator, and writer based in Richmond, Virginia, and is currently the Book Arts Program Director at the University of Richmond. She earned her BFA in Communication Arts from Virginia Commonwealth University; studied printmaking at Plymouth University, Exeter, England; and completed her MFA in Interdisciplinary Book & Paper Arts at Columbia College Chicago.
Jen has taught book arts, design, illustration, and a host of other art-related subjects at the University of Richmond, Virginia Commonwealth University, DePaul University, the American Academy of Art, Columbia College Chicago, and the Illinois Institute of Art, in addition to The Chicago High School for the Arts and after school programs including Marwen and The Chicago Center for Arts and Technology. From 2012–2015 Jen was founding director of werkspace, a gallery and community arts space dedicated to showcasing the work of emerging artists, while also offering community arts workshops ranging from book arts to printmaking to custom perfumery. Jen’s sculptural board games, artist’s books, prints, and drawings have been exhibited nationally and have won several awards. She has also completed studio fellowships at Women’s Studio Workshop and the Ragdale Foundation and has been a visiting artist at Ohio State University, Longwood University, and Columbia College Chicago, among others. She is passionate about exploring the intersection between historic printing and production methods and emerging technologies. When she’s not teaching or designing, Jen spends her free time tinkering with Arduino and 3D software, thinking about new ways to work with type, and prototyping her next indie board game/artist book.