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“We see things not as they are, but as we are.” -Anais Nin
I came to the United States as a baby, and I was raised in Las Vegas by artists, musicians, dancers, writers, teachers, and master chefs. My father was the only American in our community of immigrants. He was illiterate, but in spite of his many flaws as a human being, I owe my life as an artist to him. He put a pencil in my hand when I was about three and taught me how to draw a box.
In college I had to give up ceramics, a path I wanted to take, when an old injury and a diagnosis of arthritis made working with wet clay too painful to continue. I returned to my first love in high school, painting, and we formed a lasting relationship. I supported it by working as a freelance artist in both the digital and print world.
I mostly paint abstract interconnected patterns. In the digital world, when you increase an image, the lines blur and the colors blend with each other. You have to look with different eyes to see the patterns that form the image. The same thing happens under a microscope. The familiar image no longer exists but the patterns, the shapes and the colors of that image still exist. I use different eyes to take those elements and blend them with the earth, the sky, and the water. I use their colors on buildings that are reflected in water and sky. I reflect them in the light of the windows. Unnatural objects become part of nature when pieces of them are blended with the natural world.
That’s why abstract art is so meaningful to me. It makes the observer look with different eyes. It reveals how everything is connected, how we are all connected to each other. It’s the most important lesson we have forgotten. As an artist, I provide my different eyes to reveal the patterns that connect us, because we need to relearn this lesson. If we don’t, then the planet won’t survive, and we are all the planet.
I also paint dark impressionistic scenes in black, white, and gray. Most of them deal with the mental struggles of being human. Emotional wounds and creativity often spring from the same sources. The ability to see beyond the skin is what sets artists apart from everyone else. But I have lost too many good friends and amazing artists who were forced to live the visions of others instead of their own. It is my hope that dark, emotive art can be part of a piece that reshapes the pattern so we can all see what needs to change from the inside out.
Eight years ago I wanted to move to a place that was quiet, beautiful, and artist-friendly. I found all that on Guemes. So many people on this little island create and are connected by their creation. We may not see each other all the time, but we understand each other. We don’t have to explain why we need hours alone to follow an idea, a spark of feeling, a palette of perfect colors. We just know. Not having to explain leaves us free to create. That is a freedom I never ever take for granted. I know how fortunate I am to be able to live this way, and I constantly thank the magical winds that brought me here
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© Kate Taylor