My work takes place at the intersection of our public and personal surroundings, marking the psychologically charged spaces we occupy. Using color, light, and form, I articulate the sweet spot where the handmade confronts digital technology. The push-pull between the illusion of depth and the physically flat reality of the paintings compels me. I’m looking for a particular rhythm, a clumsy formality that seems almost tender.

Moving away from narrative towards sensation, subject matter is pushed out and an experiential sense of space fills the gap. By complicating the relationship of foreground to background, alluding to a distinct presence, my own experiences are inserted.

Beginning with a temporary collage, an image steps forward to be photographed. It is scaled and printed without altering the appearance. The deliberate retention of the original image is conceptually important to me. Returning to paint upon the surface collapses any trace of difference in how I approach these materials. The image begins and ends with my direct and physical touch.


Kate Petley Studio