Artist Statement

Through a contemporary approach to portraiture, I explore the rich terrain of individual identity and what is revealed in the intimate moments of seeing and being seen. Working in the alla prima tradition, I paint largely from life, seeking to capture a sense of immediacy, freshness, and depth in my portraits. From the privileged position of witnessing the other, I seek to convey the unique presence of each subject as well as our shared humanity.

Following the Women's March, I awoke with a vision of graffiti scrawled across a portrait. The vision translated into a body of reworked portraits featuring slogans from recent political events and quotations. The act of writing over the portraits has been empowering and liberating. The portraits move from the singular to the universal, merging image with voice. The work is ultimately about freedom of expression and the importance of speaking on behalf of those who cannot speak or are at risk of being silenced.


You Can't Stop Me14" x 11" oil on wood panel 2017 © Kate Longmaid