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Arts in Milwaukee

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  • “installation view of The New (re)Public”installation view of The New (re)Public
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  • “installation view of The New (re)Public”installation view of The New (re)Public

Kate Schaffer

  • Art
  • Literature
I am an Art Professional I am a Literary Professional

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keschafferart@gmail.com
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artist bio

Kate E. Schaffer (BS 2006, MLC; MFA 2016, SAIC) is a painter and writer exploring the fixity and possibility of time and space. Drawing on painting’s history as well as the contextual manifestation of identity, Schaffer uses expressions from within marginalization to consider what semiotic dissonances and visual cacophony can do to the grid. Creating nowheres, she shifts the viewer’s sense of positionality, generating at once a sense of place and a feeling of displacement.

artist statement

I explore the fixity and possibility of time and space. Drawing on painting’s history as well as the contextual manifestation of identity, I use expressions from within marginalization to consider what semiotic dissonances and visual cacophony can do to the grid. Creating nowheres, I shift the viewer’s sense of positionality, generating at once a sense of place and a feeling of displacement. I do this by:

1. using my own negative capability where, according to Of Water and the Spirit, “Your not knowing is your being prepared.”
2. building, breaking, and remaking space and language as I question the hegemonic, western paradigm of American culture and the history of painting.
3. examining relationships between elements in the work as well as between myself and others. In her 95 Theses on Painting, Molly Zuckerman Hartung writes, “In a painting practice, this long conversation with the self (which is a conversation with all the others encountered in one’s life, and internalized) is manifest, present in time and space as a whole, as an alternate body: the body of work.”
4. utilizing formalism and abstraction for political means as an attempt to frame, contain, and communicate my thinking and feelings.
5. changing history and the future in the present through radical imagination.
making visual and written material coalesce into liminally synesthetic experiences.
6. creating queer spaces that are at once uncool and open yet cool and knowing, that want to close but remain open.