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© Katelyn Chapman

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Katelyn Chapman

Athens, Georgia

Artist Statement

The scope of my work explores episodes of working-class life and culture in America’s rural South through the lens of my own family and friends in the Midlands of South Carolina through both history and storytelling. The ever-evolving notions and characteristics of rural culture in the American South are imbedded in the traces and residue of human touch framed through the still life and souvenir as collections. By painting these accounts, I celebrate, honor, and show reverence towards the customs and traditions of the rural working-class South. Viewing paintings as souvenir, the work spans past and present tenses while also questioning the future, thereby fully engaging with the contemporary world.

I use photography to catalogue specific moments indicative of my Southern experience, which then evolve from reference points into physical paintings. With paint, touch becomes active and unique in its ability to describe objects whereas a photograph leaves its surfaces uniform and polished. Painting’s physicality is referential to the human mind allowing elements of memory, mystery, and doubt to materialize.

I address the erasure gap between two cultures by asserting the importance of the rural within an urban context. Adding to the conversation of contemporary art I utilize my agency as both insider to the rural South, and outsider as a visual artist. These paintings are ultimately an endeavor to generate and archive a selection of personal memories, anecdotes, and experiences that others might not have ever seen or remembered if they were never replicated.

Artist Biography

Katelyn Chapman received an MFA in Painting and Drawing from the University of Georgia in 2018 and a BFA with an emphasis in Drawing from Clemson University in 2014. Her work is inspired by her deeply rooted familial and rural ties to the South. Her work has been in both national and local group exhibitions and publications. In 2017 she was selected to be published in Manifest Gallery’s 12th Volume of their International Drawing Annual. While studying at UGA Chapman was awarded the Wilson Center Graduate Research Award to complete a series of paintings as a part of her graduate thesis. At the beginning of 2018 she was invited to be a part of a small group exhibition curated by Pavel Amromin entitled, She Is of the South, at The Amelia Center Gallery at Gulf Coast State College in Panama City, FL. Most recently, Chapman’s paintings were on display at the 2018 UGA MFA Thesis Exhibition at the Georgia Museum of Art in Athens, GA.

katelynschapman.com

@kschap

© Katelyn Chapman

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