Friday, April 5, 2013

Photo Friday: Kathleen Hawkes

Kathleen Hawkes is an artist working in photography, drawing and digital image making.   She was born in Ithaca, New York. Hawkes holds a BFA from Cornell University and a MFA from the University of New Mexico. Hawkes spent 2012 on a Fulbright in Fiji working on a photography project.   She is an Assistant Professor of Photography in the Department of Art at the University of Wisconsin in La Crosse.   

View more of Kathleen's work here 

Dusk Artist Statement

Feelings of attachment, belonging, estrangement and loss are essential to my process of art making.  Discarded pastries, broken dishes, mended clothing and worn sheets in my work are metaphorical stand-ins for home and the fragility of emotional attachment. I use the camera to embalm the beauty of what is passing.   I am drawn to the fraying edges, peeling wallpaper and minute cracks in the façade of the family home.  These details are symbolized in freezing passing cherry blossoms, submerging domestic linens in milk, and covering place settings in dust.  There is a fragile balance between presence and absence that I am trying to address, by capturing a tipping-point between wholeness and destruction.   By experimenting with commonplace things I confront the tenuous nature of the physical body and emotional vulnerability.

We play out our emotional dramas physically; we touch, smell, taste, scream, tear open, push away, and pull close. Through literal flatness I access the corporeal and attempt to bypass the representational.  I want the experience of my photographs to be immediate and visceral. I print so that the objects depicted are slightly larger than life to highlight the minutiae of the edges, bubbles, or residue.  I try to embed the experience of senses other than sight, such as the scent that lingers in a room, the slightest touch, certain auditory pitches, and the density of air. These encounters illustrate physical proximity yet express emotional distance.

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