Jennifer Gillia Cutshall
ARTIST-A-DAY BLOG Inside A Generous Kingdom V: The layers of history & hope of artist Cathy Wilkin
"Einstein said, 'Creativity is intelligence having fun.' I like that."
How does your work interact with the theme of “A Generous Kingdom V: Art that Explores Story, Symbolism, and Beyond”?
Art is such a powerful, all encompassing adventure. The artist AND the viewer are confronted with the mystery, meaning and emotion of the creative process. With this exhibit, "A Generous Kingdom" I am hopeful that my art will invite viewers to think about its reason for being, its purpose and to raise those collective questions about life.
Does the idea of transformation influence your work and process?
As the saying goes, "The only thing that stays the same is change." This is a constant for me. I feel this journey acutely and as I work on my art I am in a constant state of transformation.
What draws you to the medium you chose? And tell us a little about your process.
I like the layers of the collage technique that achieve a history, like archaeology, and bring a depth to a two dimensional surface. I pull from a color palette that speaks to me as color, texture and patterns build a new context and a new vision.
What are the strengths of the medium? What are the challenges? Collage provides great flexibility. The building process and disparate connections present infinite possibilities to build my worlds. Probably the biggest negative is knowing when to hold back, to acknowledge that the work has made its statement and is finished. However, I suppose this can be said of any artist in any medium, but collage seems to be a bit more tempting.
Who inspires you? And What do you do to get inspired? To quote Cezanne, "Every time my gaze shifts as much as two inches, I have a new painting." As I work on a new concept I find it is always somewhere in my thoughts. I find this leaves me open to input from newspapers, magazines, television, music, books, and movies. Being constantly receptive to my reality keeps my concepts alive.
If you could have coffee or tea with any artist who would you pick? What would you have coffee or tea? What would you ask that artist? I would very much like to walk with Monet through his gardens. I would like to sit in his blue and yellow kitchen and share a meal. I would like to talk recipes, plants, design, politics, visions, concepts and of course, painting techniques.
What do you hope your work achieves, in general, and/or specifically with this installation?
I am thrilled to be a part of this powerful exhibition. I have this heady sense of hubris that fantasizes that the viewers will be stopped cold as they look at my piece. When that vanishes I realize that my creation is "out there" leading a life of its own and hopefully it will be strong enough to make an impression.
What recently made you smile? The 2020 election.
What recently made you cry?
Any news concerning children ripped out of their parents arms and put in cages.
If you could tell your viewers one thing, what would you tell them?
I would tell them to realize that everywhere you go you come with yourself, so might as well make sure that you're happy. Einstein said, "Creativity is intelligence having fun." I like that.