For my series of oil paintings, I use photographs from my childhood as sources of inspiration to explore the nature of memory. Every scene has nostalgic importance to me in the way that each captures moments that are frozen in time and that may now only be remembered imperfectly—moments spent playing on the beach, collecting snowballs, or passing the day idly. Part of my project’s work is to communicate the magic of this imperfection. As time passes, moments enter into the almost dreamlike realm of memory where time, space, and narrative link between events, and our personal relationships lose their detail.
I have rendered my family members as silhouette-like, ghostly figures that lack definitive spaces in order to embrace the effect that memory has on representation. At the same time, the thinness of the oil paint and the monochromatic palette of each piece put these concepts to work and speak to the darker, melancholic nature of nostalgia. As a series of small scale works, the paintings explore the tension between intimacy and abstraction by representing images whose magic arises from their fleeting nature.
Kate McCammon received her BFA in painting from Maryland Institute College of Art in 2012. Her enigmatic paintings draw on the history of portraiture as well as the genre of landscape. She has been awarded a number of residencies while she was an undergraduate student, including one to study painting with Norwegian artist, Odd Nerdrum, and since graduation she has been awarded residencies at the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica in Venice, Italy and at the Burren College of Art in Ballyvaughan, Ireland. Her work has been included in exhibitions at the Monongalia Arts Center, MICA Meyerhoff Gallery, Maryland Federation of Art, North Valley Art League, Connecticut Academy of Fine Arts, and Scuola Internazionale di Grafica, among others. She currently lives in Bridgeport, WV and teaches courses at the Monongalia Arts Center.