Based in Springfield, Missouri, US
Kim is a collage artist whose rich, detailed works centre around her experiences of being a wife and a mother and the way women tackle these roles. Similarly, the materials she uses already come with a story of their own: old newspapers, found paper, vintage pieces...
A: Please, tell us a bit more about yourself. What brought you into art?
K: I am a mixed media collage artist working out of my home in Springfield, Missouri. I never saw myself as an artist, even though I grew up making paper dolls and other crafts my whole childhood. I never took an art class or learned any proper techniques so everything I do is self taught and learned as I went along. With my art I use vintage and found paper along with ephemera — these I usually find at estate sales or thrift stores, but you might also find me jumping into a dumpster or searching a recycle center. I started making these collages during the Covid lockdown as a way to deal with the anxiety and stress of the situation. Using pieces and fragments of paper to make a whole harmonious composition just gave me a way to work through my emotions and make sense of everything.
A: What inspires you the most?
K: My inspiration for my art comes from my own life experiences as a mother and wife. Much of my work reflects the domestic role that women are put in almost automatically once married and the way motherhood is defined.
A: Do you have any specific rituals while working(creating)?
K: Specific rituals? I don’t think I have any rituals — but here I would like to say that I am very messy and my creative space has to be cluttered and messy for me to work. It actually helps my creativity to be in a space like this. If an area is too clean and organized I just can’t think. I like to have all my papers right nearby so I can just choose what I need at the moment I need it, and a cluttered space allows that intuitive process to flourish.
A: What would you recommend to someone who's new to art (whether artist or just an admirer), what to begin with?
K: My advice to anyone who wants to get started in making art is just to go for it and do it! So many times people are walking around with art fear. They are afraid that their art won’t be good or that they will spend the money on all the materials and waste it on bad art. My answer to that is don’t buy all the stuff and just make art. With collage you only need glue, paper, and scissors. I make collages every day. If someone would do that — just make a collage every day - they will get better and better.
A: The perfect phrase to start any conversation about art is: ...?
K: The perfect place to start any conversation about art is in your own home with your child or someone else’s child. Absent of that — the schools. Art should be taught like any other subject and parents should encourage their children to be and creative and expose them to all forms of art. Even if they don’t make a masterpiece, they are still expressing their emotion through art and releasing stress and stretching their creativity. Making art is something that you can do your whole life and is such an easy and enjoyable hobby.
A: Must-read books to help us talk about art (do we even need them)?
K: I don’t think anyone necessarily need any books to help talk about art. I am self taught so I have not read any books that taught technique or proper ways to make a piece of art. Everything I make is intuitive. Sometimes I think that books and classes get in the way of the creative process. But I will say that going to museums and studying art history is a wonderful way to see great art and what makes it great. Visiting museusms will answer the question — why is this piece of art so good?
A: If you could change one thing in the art world - what would it be?
K: Wow — great question about changing one thing in the art world and an easy answer — make the art world more accessible, accommodating, and supportive to women, people who are pregnant, and mothers. A lot of these people don’t have high mobility, financial independence, or high availabliity/flexibility. There was an immediate shift in expectation of me as an artist once I became more in demand. I have had to turn down opportunities because I am a mother. I am currently working on a way to make it work for me. Hopefully I can find a happy medium because I want to do more with my art and get it out to more people.
A: Please, share your ur favorite quote (not necessarily related to art):
K: I have a lot of favorite quotes — but here is a favorite: "If you don’t like something change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude." - Maya Angelou
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