I’ve been a professional artist for 25 years. In that time I’ve painted in oil, gouache and acrylic, on canvas, wood and cardboard boxes. I’ve dabbled in printmaking and encaustic and I’ve given blood (I do mean that literally), sweat and tears to the craft of embroidery.
I’ve loved them all and never say never as to what I will do next. What I do know is that I wake up every morning with a need to create art. It is how I connect with the world and express who I am.
Currently I am blissfully painting with oil on canvas creating narrative landscapes inspired by travels, both recent and long ago. As of this writing we are all navigating a pandemic and political upheaval. At times my work has expressed my social consciousness. Other times, I seek to tell humorous stories of my life. In times of extreme stress I may turn to it as a balm to soothe my soul and, I hope, other’s. I’m sure my current deep dive into old family vacation photos is a result of the latter.
My style is inspired by folk art, pop art and fauvism, thrown in a blender to create my personal voice. The result are works that are warm and engaging, funny and authentic, familiar and surprising at the same time.
Kathy Halper became an artist after a career writing advertising. Over the years, she has explored many different mediums. Recently coming to the conclusion that for her, the artist isn’t defined by the choice of medium or theme at all. The artist is defined simply by the need to make art.
While raising teenagers at the onset of the social media revolution, she became fascinated by found online photos of teens at play and began a series exploring privacy and parenting in the age of public posting. This led to a series of embroidered drawings and portraits on the theme and saw this work being represented by Packer Schopf Gallery in Chicago, George Billis Gallery in LA and Muriel Guepin in New York City as well as countless museum and gallery exhibits. Her work has been shown in Art Basel Miami and has been written about in Huffington Post, art magazines and blogs all over the world.
While Halper will occasionally return to textile work, her work has become even more personal, showcasing her sharp humor, creative exploration and storytelling skills. In the past few years, she has created political narratives through oil on board, cardboard 3D paintings that tell stories of her life and most recently, contemporary folk art paintings inspired by personal travel and idealized space.
The artist lives in Evanston, IL.