Friday, May 7, 2010

Kathy York - Austin, Texas

1. How do you describe yourself? A happy go lucky artist with phases of complete obsession.

2. What is your creative process? I need a quiet space to think and dream. Ideas come to me in the form of pictures. Sometimes they are complete pictures and sometimes only partially formed. The idea is usually expressive of some larger concept and as I work I find multiples levels of meaning in my work as the daily life gets expressed within the larger picture.

3. What's your style? My style is basically bold and bright. I like to be fearless in my attempts to try new techniques. I used to think that working in a series would be boring. However, I am finding that over time I revisit different ideas and compositions and make them again with a different view. My series happen over years and I work on them concurrently with other series. I like for the work to tell a story regardless if it is pictorial or abstract.

4. How long have you been a quilt maker/fiber artist? I have been making fiber art since 2003, and that started with my participation in the Journal Quilt Project.

5. Do you listen to music when you make art? Sometimes I listen to music when I quilt, I love adult alternative. And I almost always listen to music when I am doing surface design. When I am quilting or sewing, I will usually 'watch' a movie. The best ones are just background noise, films that I have seen so many times that it doesn't matter if I miss a section because my machine is humming too loudly.

6. What do you do when you are blocked creatively? When I am blocked creatively, I take a break. I will take a long hike in the trails around Austin. I also like to do traditional piecing or fabric dyeing when I have finished a difficult piece of art, either technically or emotionally challenging.

7. Do you teach? I do teach, but rarely. It is hard to get childcare, and difficult to travel. My favorite part of teaching? Watching the light bulbs turn on over students' heads and seeing their creativity expressed!! Total joy!

8. Are there artistic endeavors that you have yet to do? I want to take an idea and expand it in about 30 different ways, large and small (right now!) I would love to have a solo exhibit. I would love exhibit my work more frequently in art museums. I would love to sell more of my work.

9. How do you balance your family life and art? I temporarily lose balance when I am hip deep in a project. Then the balance swings away from art during both crisis and lulls. My family is so incredibly important to me, and I have to take care of myself too. My rock climbing period of my life was all about balance. It was my best literal skill (not strength!). It is a perfect metaphor for life and so remains in the forefront of my thinking and planning for each day. For me, making art is all about self expression. But there is no self to express if I am not connected to my family and friends. Balance is key.

10. What is the best part about what you do? Playing with color and communicating with a world larger than the walls of my house, both through my blog and exhibiting my work.

visit Kathy's blog in the right column
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