Kathleen Kane-Murrell on the Evolution of Her Work

“It is through art history and art making that I best understand the human condition and, in particular, what it means and has meant to be female.”

Kathleen Kane-Murrell is a long-time art educator and San Diego artist. Her work has been shown in solo and group shows throughout Southern California.  In today’s blog post she writes about the evolution of her practice:

“I believe artists have critical voices necessary for an evolved society. The legacy of art making matters to my process. Through color, texture, and high touch surfaces, my work tends to focus on memory, specific places, and experiences.  Repetition of shapes and patterns consistently emerge often with a connection to nature and environment.

I am drawn to the high and low of art making—from the classically trained to the spontaneous creation of young artists. I work in a variety of media and am influenced by the everyday including the curriculum I create for my children’s art program. My mixed media work often incorporates classroom detritus. I value the freedom to experiment with materials and subject matter.

As I evolved into an abstract artist, there always seemed to be the thread of a narrative.  I usually do not feel compelled to explain to the viewer. Viewers bring their own point of view. So, if a description becomes needed, “abstractly narrative in multiple media” describes the art I make.

The work created for Fresh Paint’s 20/20: Women of Vision is from my Moss series. It speaks to the power of renewal and growth. Moss grows in unlikely places.  It Is often ignored, as I feel women have been.  Yet, like moss, we are complicated, necessary, and strong. We are formed by the challenges we face just as moss grows to the shape of the contours below the surface.  Our strength as we slide in and out of a pandemic speaks to persistence and regeneration. I remain positive.”

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