Today we’d like to introduce you to K Ann Horn.
K Ann, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
I fell into art as a side practice that reflected other endeavors throughout my life. I started my art making in middle school, but only if it coincided with my array of activities: basketball, student council, an honors class schedule. My past lives heavily influence my current work, and I carry fragments of traits I once wholeheartedly possessed, the intensity and competition as an all-around athlete, the languid despondency of my teen years overwhelmed by status in a hometown I had yet to understand, to the structured, societal femininity of my four years as college girl on a name-brand diet. I’m learning to internalize the many experiences of my past to shape my present conviction, which I seek to express through my work.
Can you give our readers some background on your art?
I create large-scale oil paintings that can be described as still-lives. My work is influenced by the malleability of post-girlhood identity. I look to possessions as a medium through which to unearth the female fixation on domestic skill, object materialism, and appearance that exists even during an age when domesticity seems like an afterthought. The banal interpretations of young female objects reference the tension between growth and inevitability, while contorting the dependence upon goods as a reflection of identity in the internet era. By portraying these objects at uncharacteristic times in their life cycles, I question their purpose, their significance, and their necessity to our identities. These common objects represent false narratives for supposedly meaningful, yet undeveloped occasions; they are souvenirs of moments still in formation; caricatures of sentimentality for plans that have passed without fruition. My hope is that a viewer sees both trivial abundance and tokens of status at the same time, a juxtaposition I feel reflects my struggle with my own inclusion and revulsion of my current place in society.
What responsibility, if any, do you think artists have to use their art to help alleviate problems faced by others? Has your art been affected by issues you’ve concerned about?
The messages in my work are directly drawn from my personal experience in our current cultural climate. I’m interested in how our roles as women are evolving now: though more women are currently running for political office, we still are not in a place where women are making decisions about their futures. At times, I wonder if our obsession with consumption and presentation, this preoccupation with personal aesthetics is, as it always has been, used as a tool to distract women from engaging in issues beyond those of traditional female spheres. “Raincheck”, a painting of a dishwasher interior, is an obvious reference to women’s domestic roles, but also questions the presentation of dishware: how should a table be set? What should be shown publicly to others? Can we balance the preservation of our domestic role while exercising a larger political or cultural role? Can we just leave it in the dishwasher, even if it looks bad, because we have more important things to do? I question the role young women in emerging adulthood can begin to inhabit within society, one that is larger than just being in between daughter-hood and motherhood, but is more active: in their careers, governments, and civil duties.
What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
Most recently, my work was in my first solo exhibition, Exaggerations in Interim, at Positive Space Studios, which was up through April 2018. I am currently note taking and sketching the beginnings of my next series, but I leave all of my updates on my Instagram account, @kelsey_horn, or on my website, kannhorn.com so I suggest people look there!
- Website: kannhorn.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @kelsey_horn