Rosemaling with Jan Boettcher
From Jon Kay
SPOTLIGHT: Jan Boettcher
Jan Boettcher practices rosemaling, a type of traditional decorative painting. Her desire to connect with her Norwegian ancestry led her to learn the art from her aunt Dorothy. Jan now works closely with her husband, Roger, who creates wooden pieces for her to paint. This
allows her to produce works of art for her Norwegian-American customers that evoke the natural landscapes of their ancestral homes.
ORIGINALLY FROM WISCON, JAN AND ROGER MOVED TO THORNTOWN, INDIANA FROM WISCONSIN FOR HIS WORK IN 1999.
Through the years, Jan has studied historic photographs and older pieces to inform her art, and has taken classes in rosemaling at the Vesterheim Folk Art School in Iowa. Today, she continues to exercise and expand her repertoire of styles and techniques. While she sells her art to collectors all over the United States and beyond, rosemaling provides more than just money— it is a meditative practice, a way to engage with her heritage and her community, and to get lost in the creative process.
“I think the main thing that rosemaling gives to me, is it keeps me busy, keeps me active, keeps me connected with people. It keeps me looking forward instead of thinking, Oh, I remember when you know you're not looking back. It's something to look forward to every day. I always say if I lived to be 200 I'll never finish everything I have in my mind.”— Jan Boettcher
Watch a video short about Jan’s rosemaling here: http://go.iu.edu/2dkc