ARTIST: Kate Elmen
DIMENSIONS: 20" x 20"
MEDIUM: oil on panel


I work from both observation and memory, often moving back and forth between the two on the same piece. When painting outdoors, I return to my favorite places — I also have some favorite individual trees! — absorbing myself in familiar surroundings so that the motif becomes part of me, then continue working on the painting in the studio.

I have this notion that everyone has a signature rhythm — a tempo that has its origins in utero and that is cultivated over a lifetime of exploring the natural world. Her unique cadence is manifested in her voice and gait, her handwriting and brush strokes. Within every painting lies her rhythmic origins, “a foundational heartbeat” says the poet, Jane Hirschfield. If my painting speaks to you I believe we are enjoying a dialogue across time and distance, and that our rhythms are in synch.