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Featured Artist: Kim Wilkie (May 8th - June 30th, 2018)

Kim was born and raised in London, Ontario. She has a diploma from the Regional School for Nursing Assistants and worked as a Registered Nursing Assistant before raising three children. She received an Honors Fine Arts Studio Degree with Distinction in 2006 from Western University, formerly The University of Western Ontario. It was with great honour that Kim was chosen in her graduating year for the “Embroiderer’s Guild Award.” The President of the Embroiderer’s Guild said they chose her because of the consistent use of sewing and embroidery in her art throughout her degree. She took instruction from Kim Moodie, Jennie White, Helmut Becker, Patrick Mahon, Colette Urban, Ken Singer and Chris Down. Kim has exhibited her art in juried and non juried group shows in South Western Ontario since 1994. She has volunteered at Museum London; in Art Rental and Sales, with the Art Mart Committee for several years and was a board member of Museum London with a seat for CARFAC for two years. Kim also volunteered at The Arts Project, Axis Studios in the market as well as Forest City Gallery in the past. In 2015 Kim received a post-graduate certificate in Expressive Arts from Fleming College, at the Haliburton Campus and in the fall opened a new studio/gallery called KDW Fine Art. The goal of this studio gallery is to show her artistic expression and to exhibit her own artwork for sale.  

Artist Statement

"I have gone back in my own personal history and found a moment in time as a young child where there was a sudden unforeseen incident in my life that changed the way I viewed myself and the world. I believe that I have carried this moment in time with me in all my artistic endeavours, in some sense, trying to correct this circumstance. My educational influences and a push from teachers in the direction of art was also a pivotal for me and began my life long commitment to expressing myself through art. This educational influence also exposed me to abstraction in painting and the quest for knowledge through art making. I did, paint by number, paintings and embroidery-painting on cloth, a familial influence, along with embroidery, sewing, and crocheting, while I still had a love for brightly coloured hand crafts and cardboard home creations. At that time bright neon colours were used in crafts everywhere and I felt excited and light hearted when I used them. And so, I continue to use bright colours in string and paint while creating art since it is a memento of good feelings that comfort me. It is my personal history and the materials that I use that collide with the history of string or cloth and its utility and the history of fine art painting.

My art had become a pairing of two areas in art, craft (string/cloth) and fine art (paint) into one expression. Further, my art expression becomes a comment on art history and its categorization and the questioning of what can be termed or be called a painting in fine art. I am categorized as a fibre artist even though I believe myself to be a painter. String and or thread has a long history in its utility, but it is also the support for paint in its woven fashion, in-which historically famous artists have expressed the avant-garde movements of two demential art. Has my inclusion of cloth or string changed the way we look at painting? I am still painting on material and I believe that I have just brought forward the traditional materials of painting and I have utilized them in a new way on canvas. Paterson Ewen did paintings on different materials but it was his concave carved plywood; perhaps an extension of the wood stretcher bars that were his attention getting mark and he is still considered a painter. I have taken the leap with canvas/cloth material and its properties in my painting to a textural convex three demential property that has always been permeable for embroidery work on stretcher bars. I have revealed the materials for what they are and created a new utility within fine art painting similar to Paterson Ewen’s three dimensional properties. Simply, this is just how I paint. The combining of these materials (paint and string) and their histories can also be seen metaphorically as a joining and or a partnership of the masculine arts (paint) and the feminine arts (craft). My paintings speaks about a partnership and an idealized equality of materials and to push the idea further it questions the standings of female artists in the art world. My artwork and the chosen materials do have a voice. In the end, I pursue the beauty of two materials to make a correction somehow in the act of art making for myself and possibly visible to others, as a painting. For now though, I can intuitively use string and paint in a partnership as they have always been in a multitude of ways to express my self in abstraction and in abstract imaginary landscape-type paintings. Of course, the play of craft like materials may find there way within my paintings, a place where my mementos lie."

Kim's work will be on display as the Featured Artist in Muse from May 8th to June 30th, 2018.

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