Lineages | Katharine Draper and Aisha Nailah
Artwork by Katharine Draper and Aisha Nailah On display May 3 – June 17, 2018. For information, contact Kathy at kathydraper.com and Anailah at Anailah.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Imagine a wide, linear sweep of your hand creating combinations of colors, symbols, and forms on a surface. This sweep represents a lineage of your life experience, cultural heritage, and artistic history. All of these are elements that we, artists or not, are carrying with us. In that sweep, you may find representations of sky or water or trees or people in your midst. Even with similar color palettes or subject matter, the sweep will be uniquely yours. These works by Kathy Draper and Aisha Nailah are connected by vibrant colors, shapes, and repeating patterns. While Kathy’s fluid technique replicates patterns she sees in nature, Aisha’s symbols and profiles create a rich African-American tapestry. By allowing their lineage to manifest itself, the artists can speak to the viewers in their individual voices.
Curators: Annamari Mikkola and Gregg Welz
My longtime study of ikebana (Japanese floral arrangement) with the Sogetsu School in Japan greatly informs the creation of texture, color, line, depth, and harmony in my work. Organic shapes contrasted by inorganic shapes in nature are my inspiration. In both my paintings and prints, I want the viewer to be drawn into the work and become fascinated with the shapes, textures, and colors of the design. I continually try to express myself and my feelings in new ways. I strive to create movement and depth on a two-dimensional surface using different techniques to evoke emotions and tensions.
My art style is urban abstract—a little bit cultural, a lot colorful, and very organic. Informed by and concerned with my culture, much of my work is about Black women, about my experience of being a Caribbean and Black woman in America. Beauty is where it starts for me. I have an intense love of color, dimension, and texture, working through canvas, paper, and photography. My work expresses what the world is giving me. It's color therapy, culture, emotion, it's fantasy, dreams, and nightmares. I have a blank canvas and I pull colors. It starts a story and I attempt to finish it, and sometimes it becomes a series. Most of my work is me feeling my way around, literally, until I can do no more.