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Artists to Inspire, January: Kiki Smith

“I like that feeling when you’re making art, that you’re taking the energy out of your body and putting it into a physical object. I like things that are labor-intensive : you make a little thing and another little thing and another little thing, and eventually you see a possibility.” -- Kiki Smith

In October 2017 I had the opportunity to visit the Dallas Contemporary and view a new series of artwork by a longtime favorite artist, Kiki Smith. I first encountered Kiki Smith's work in college, where she was highlighted in both a Contemporary Art class and a Sculpture class, as well as on the PBS show Art21. Around the same time I was able to experience her work in person on a field trip to the Walker Art Museum in Minneapolis, MN, where a retrospective of her work was the featured exhibit. At the time I remember being blown away by not only the sheer amount of work she has produced, but also by the contemplative style and highly symbolic and personal nature of her work. The pieces at the Dallas Contemporary renewed that awe, and as such we'll be discussing Ms. Smith's work in upcoming January classes.

**It should be noted here, as this is our first blog post on our artist inspirations that, as with virtually all artists, not all of Ms. Smith's work will be considered appropriate for children. Here at the Make Room we go out of our way to ensure that what is viewed and discussed IS age appropriate for your children, and transparency is one of the reasons we've created this series of blog posts.**

Kiki Smith is an American artist, currently working and residing in New York City. She was born in West Germany, however, and her European experiences and Catholic upbringing highly influence the way she approaches the world. Her works are also deeply personal, and she has made many pieces exploring the lives and deaths of close family members, including her parents and siblings. She is also inspired by animals, astrology, mythology, fairy tales, domesticity, and the quest for personal identity through art making. To achieve this Ms. Smith utilizes drawing, printmaking, and sculpture.

Specific Works we're inspired by:

Key Concepts we'll be discussing with Ms. Smith's work include:

+Creating a NARRATIVE work

+Using SYMBOLS to tell a story

+Using color to set a TONE to our artwork

Ways we'll MAKE:

+DRAWING with ink on vellum

+BUILDING 3-D objects

+Using LIGHT and TRANSPARENCY to make our artwork stand out

Excited to MAKE with you and your families in the New Year!

Looking forward,

Miss Megan

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