About Jennifer Faust
It’s easy to see how Jennifer Faust’s life may have always been leading her to this place, wherein she is creating Triptych, before she was even born. Her father and grandmother were both medical professionals. When she was very little, she remembers wanting to emulate with them – to do something in her life that was really “real” – to make changes in the world that really affect other people’s lives. She began working in hospitals at 20 years old and saw how the nurses there were able to really connect with their patients, bring them comfort, take care of them in a way that doctors did not. And in oncology – well, that was where things got really “real” – and fast, too.
Her caring, fearlessness, and dedication drove her to work in a field where they had not yet realized the mental toll that the daily fight for life – and the inevitable loss to death – took on the nurses who worked there. And, like most of us, Jennifer did not know that she needed to – or even how to – process all these experiences, emotions, and loss. And it eventually led her to compassion fatigue. Working through these emotions was a long process, but during it, she was led to express her buried emotions through a form of expression she had begun studying at 4 years old, with ballet, and, eventually, in 2003, tribal fusion belly dance.
From this place of working through grief and emotion, Triptych was born. In concept, it had always been three parts – Dust, Blood, and Water. It was during this time that, when she was preparing to perform with the San Francisco City College, that she discovered an original Diego Rivera painting and the legacy of visual media juxtaposed with the brevity of the performance art piece she was about to perform with months of practice culminating in a 3 minute performance drove her to create something more lasting – a performance on digital video.
As it happened, she was taking a yoga class with her friend Catherine Tate (and, at the time, Jennifer was not aware of her profession) and mentioned that she wanted to create a video in three parts expressing what she experienced as an Oncology nurse. Catherine encouraged her to create the film and offered to help in it’s production.
Before she knew it, internationally recognized dancers, women Jennifer considered her idols and mentors, including Amy Sigil and Sharon Kihara, were asking to be part of the series. The people she has met in this journey have been incredible and have gone beyond all expectations. But no one has worked as tirelessly or driven themselves as far as Jennifer, who, at times, has gone without food on her table to pay for production. However, she would never take back her efforts of experiences in creating Triptych – she is still as driven today as the day she realized she had to create it. And she is in deep appreciation for everyone who has helped and supported her.
Things you might not know about Jennifer:
1 – she has actually studied and competed in Muay Thai, studying in Thailand three times already.
2 – she grew up on meager means, so she’s well aware that more money does not equate to more happiness.
3 – she was actually chubby in college.