I am always experimenting with conventional and unconventional media, and for reasons not entirely known to me, seem to have a need to electrify much of my work. I really enjoy watching the unlit artwork transform into something ethereal when lit at night. I create rice paper constructions in bas-relief on canvas, paint the negative space with acrylic paint, and overlay the pieces with a huge variety of mixed media. Most pieces are backlit with LED lights attached to the canvas, creating essentially 2 very different pieces of art unified by concept. The pieces are to be viewed in daylight, as well as in total darkness.
I enjoy contrasting organic and industrial materials. I particularly like to use pieces of broken, hand-blown glass in my work, piercing the canvas to create bright areas of color when backlit. Numerous individuals throughout the years have remarked that the glass sticking out of the canvas might be dangerous, and I am sure there has been speculation regarding the psychology of creating work that has glass shards jutting out toward the viewer. Perhaps I have unresolved aggression issues, but I like to think that I just encourage others to live a little less cautiously.
I find inspiration virtually everywhere and influences include: Isamu Nagouchi and numerous other abstract expressionists, Dr. Suess, oil refineries, aspen trees, marshes, Dale Chihuly, tattoos, Tim Burton, classical music, cemetery statuary, fountains, junkyards, Alexander Caulder, graffiti, Kent Bellows, crystal chandeliers, Lucien Freud, prehistoric cave art, frost, anything having to do with New Orleans, 101 Dalmatian concept art, Edward Weston, hardware stores, J.J. Audubon, and the Old Masters – to name a few.
It is immensely gratifying to finally arrive at a place in my artistic and personal development where I not only feel passionate about what I create, but also find myself fearless about the vulnerability that comes with proffering my work to the world-at-large. I am excited to see where my artwork takes me from here. So far, is proving to be a quite a wild ride. - Kris Lee