Jean Kluge

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Fan
Name: Jean Kluge
Alias(es): M. Margaret O'Shea, Mary Margaret O'Shea ("Ensign Maggie O'Shea" is one of Kluge's original characters (a red-haired, feisty baseball player) in Pulse of the Machine.)
Type: fan artist, fan writer
Fandoms: The Sentinel, Star Trek: The Next Generation, The Professionals, Beauty and the Beast, Star Wars
Communities:
Other:
URL: jeankluge website
thistle@ravenshadow.net
thistlethorn58@gmail.com
jkluge at LiveJournal
Media Art (Wayback Machine)
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

Jean Kluge is a well-known and highly praised fan artist.

She's been active in many fandoms, but is probably best known for her artwork in Star Trek, Star Trek: The Next Generation, The Professionals, and The Sentinel. Her art has been on the cover of many zines, sold as originals and prints at conventions, and later on the Internet, and recently, sold as t-shirt transfers.

Kluge is also a writer. She wrote the Sentinel Jim/Blair novel Changes, and wrote (and illustrated with Marty Siegrist), the beautiful ST:TNG Data/Tasha novel Pulse of the Machine.

Profit and Value

One of her ST:TNG drawings is the cover of Textual Poachers, by Henry Jenkins. Jenkins later commented that her artwork "went up in value within the art hierarchy of fandom because it was associated with the book."[1]

During the 1980s and 90s, like Suzie Lovett and a few other artists, her art often went for hundreds of dollars at art auctions at conventions, leading to conversations about why it was considered wrong for fan writers and fan publishers to profit from their work, but all right for fannish artists to profit from their work. See letter of comment submitted to the The Hatstand Express on the topic.

Profit was also an issue in her 2009 "re-publication" of her Sentinel fanzine Changes in PDF form. More information about the discussion can be found at the "changes" zine here.

Awards

Con Guest

Kluge was a guest of honor at:

Opinions Regarding Agent With Style

See Dear Disreputable Zine Publisher.

Stance on Slash Fanworks

[1988]: Somebody's actually gone and done it. I mean, I knew that somebody would—eventually. I was hoping for later rather than sooner. Someone wrote a slash Next Generation story ["Research/Development"]. (They can argue that it isn't, but the semantics really make little difference.) And it's excruciatingly awful. Let me make my position clear on "/" fiction, to set the record straight. I like good slash fiction. I enjoy believable slash fiction. Those, however, are the two operative words—good and believable. K/S that involves one or the other character as a "love slave," or equally "alternate" permutations generally make me go,"Huh? Who are these people?" I've also read slash fiction in numerous other fandoms, some of it wonderful, some of it in the Excruciatingly Awful category. So— I'm not against slash fiction, per se. I am, however, very much against badly written fiction, and this one fits the bill. Picture this: a normal day on the new ENTERPRISE. Riker is making out his list of Things To Do. The laundry. Check on Engineering. Seduce Data. Huh?? Actually, to be fair (although certainly nobody warned me in advance, 'sexually explicit' doesn't cut it), that's not quite how it goes. But it's close... Who are these people? Riker and Data? I can't think of an unlikelier combination. To make this one believable, it'd take a lot of doing, and I doubt that fandom's best writers could pull it off. It just isn't in the characters as we know them. [2]

Kluge created at least two Riker/Data fanarts, "Nothing So Strong" and "Evolution," of her own. See those, and some other examples of her slash art, at her web page.

In 2015, a fan wrote about some of Kluge's slash art:
I didn’t even know about slash until the mid-90s, when I saw a piece of Riker/Data kissing artwork from the great fan artist Jean Kluge from across the room I remember thinking *wow, Troi sure looks pale* … until I got up close to it. [3]

Comments on Fanart

In 1988, Kluge wrote about rejection, influence, and perseverance:
First, on the rejection of artwork. I am a firm believer in 'no art is better than poor art.' The problem is, I've seen a great many editors who talk a good line about rejecting artwork that is not up to par, but whose fanzines are littered with numerous examples of just what constitutes 'not up to par.' My own feelings on this are that most editors don't have the time or energy to round up really spectacular art for every piece of prose that they decide to print, or that some of them just don't recognize poor renderings when they see them. In that case, badly-drawn work is inevitable. There are also other sides to this issue. Take a look at some of Connie Faddis's early works in old zines. Or Suzan Lovett's. Or nearly any other artist whose work today is the kind of art that the rest of us attempt to emulate. Those early works may show only the faintest beginnings of the talent that was later brought forth through practice and a gradual improvement in technique. Without encouragement (and criticism) of fellow fans, some of these artists may never pursue their interest in drawing. It would be easy to say that any artist worth the paper she uses would presumably have the burning drive needed to keep practicing despite letters of rejection, but that is generally not the case. I still cringe when I see badly-rendered art work—but then I go back to some of the zines that printed my earlier works, and try to put what I've seen into perspective. It doesn't make the bad art work any prettier, but it at least gives me a measure of tolerance toward the artist who may only now be learning. As I am. I just may happen to be further down the line. [4]
In 1988, Kluge wrote about her Star Trek: TNG story in Vault of Tomorrow #13:
I also did the artwork that accompanies it, and would like to pass on a bit of wisdom that Suzan Lovett and I have both discovered: printing color artwork in black and white is a chancy business. Sometimes it works out wonderfully; most often than not, it doesn't work well at all. Unfortunately, this particular illustration belongs in the latter category. The original won Best of Show by both popular vote and the art show staff at Media West*Con 8—the same illustration printed in black and white looks incredibly awful. Live and learn. [5]
In 2017, Suzan Lovett credited Kluge's influence on her own art and style:
[ Jean Kluge and I] lived close and we got to know each other. She was the one into a decorated borders and Celtic knot work. If it weren't for her, I probably would never have gone into it. Watching her work on that, those things is what got me into it. We were always influencing one another all over the place. [6]

Comments on Fanfiction

[1977]: I don't know the difference between a Good Story and Shit, except in how it makes me feel. I'm a terrific speller. That and grammar are my high points, as far as editorial skills are concerned. But I think I'm learning... [7]

Zines Containing Kluge's Work

Appointment in Georgetown | Artforum | Changes | A Companion for My Death | Datazine #55 | Destiny #4 | Dr. Bellfriar's Memorial Journal | Elusive Lover - Alternate Visions | Elusive Lover | Elusive Lover - Alternate Visions | Entr'Acte | Fantasia (editor) | Forever True | From a Certain Point of View | Galactic Discourse #5 | Gentlemen Never Tell #6 | Guardian #7, #8 | Psst... Hey Kid, Wanna Buy a Fanzine? #3, #4, #5 | Idylls #4 | Leave a Light On for Me | The Machiavelli Factor | Masiform D #5 (article) | Mind Meld | Missing Links #1 | Motet #1, #4 | A New Hope #1, #2| Pegasus #6 |Powerplay #5 | Pulse of the Machine | Rerun #7, #8 | Sanctuary | Sanctuary Moon | Sardonac | A Secret Place #4 | The Sensual World #1 | Shadowstar #23 | Smarm | StarQuest | Subspace Chatter #4 | The Road to Hell and Other Stories | The Sensual World #1 | Smarm | Spinerisms | Treklink #13 | The Wookiee Commode #3, #5 | Those Who Favor Fire | Threshold to Dreams | Variations on the Theme of B and D #1, #2 | Vault of Tomorrow #9, #13 | Vilya | You Could Use a Good Kiss #3

Gallery

1983

1986

1987

1988

1989

1989: The Cover of "Textual Poachers": "The Quest"

1990

1991

1992

1993

1996

1997

1998

1999

2001

2002

2003

2011

Titled Art from Unknown Zines and Sources

See: the author's website, here, here, here, and here (archive link); here.

Images below (arranged by fandom) are for identification purposes, as well as a hope for better images. If you know more about them, add info? If they are represented elsewhere, remove. If you find a better place for them that involves context, move to other Fanlore pages?

References

  1. ^ "There are T-shirts which have the cover of Textual Poachers on them which circulate in the fan economy, and the work of that artist, Jean Kluge, went up in value within the art hierarchy of fandom because it was associated with the book. She became a more valuable fan artist as a result of that." -- Intensities interviews Henry Jenkins @ Console-ing Passions, University of Bristol, July 7, 2001.
  2. ^ from Treklink #14
  3. ^ See more of this quote at: veronica-rich, January 20
  4. ^ from Treklink #14
  5. ^ from Treklink #14
  6. ^ from Media Fandom Oral History Project Interview with Suzan Lovett
  7. ^ comments to I (and Sharon) have been backed into a corner defending a single position over quality controls. Frankly, I rather resent this.
  8. ^ artist's website
  9. ^ artist's website
  10. ^ Kluge's website
  11. ^ from an loc in The Wookiee Commode #6
  12. ^ from an loc in The Wookiee Commode #6
  13. ^ from an loc in The Wookiee Commode #6
  14. ^ from an loc in The Wookiee Commode #6
  15. ^ from an loc in The Wookiee Commode #6
  16. ^ from an loc in The Wookiee Commode #6
  17. ^ Kluge's website
  18. ^ Kluge's website
  19. ^ Kluge's website
  20. ^ author's website
  21. ^ Kluge's website
  22. ^ author's website
  23. ^ author's website
  24. ^ author's website
  25. ^ Originally meant to be a cover. Artist's Webpage, via Wayback Machine