Kara Haywood


Artist Statement

My studio work shows the accumulation and circulation of objects within the space of the girl’s bedroom. Through painting, drawing and collage, building and layering objects is a way of mapping the transitional period between adolescence and adulthood. Pulling from my experience of growing up as a middle-class, self-identifying female, painting is used as a process of understanding feelings of loss during growth.

The paintings and drawings act as non-figurative self-portraits through objects and spaces. The bedroom, and what comes and goes, maps an important shift in self. Transitional objects are important during the transitional stages in a child’s life, often presented in the form of soft or plush. These objects are used for comfort during situations that bring on stress or anxiety, to reduce trauma and to remind oneself of security in a new environment but at some point, the transitional object is forgotten. Using layers of transparent paper, I am covering objects, painting over objects with new ones, and pushing others to the background. The use of highly pigmented pink and yellow acrylics act similar to brightly colored plastic and plush toys. Painting has become a way of working through my love for things considered girly or cute, while feeling distant from the associations of sweetness and innocence placed upon being a young girl. I am focusing on cute objects, objects that I have always been drawn to, and the time period where I, for the first time, understood I could no longer associate with these objects without it altering the way society perceives me.