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ADVANCING THE ARTS ACROSS MARYLAND

Cat Gunn

Cat Gunn

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Artist Work

The salt burned my eyes over and over
2019
Acrylic, oil, and alkyd on canvas on panel
48x40x1.75 in.
Even though we are under the same roof, I am still solar systems away from you
2019
Oil and alkyd on canvas on panel
19x14x1.75 in.
That's no moon
2019
Acrylic, oil, and alkyd on canvas on panel
8x8x1.75 in.
It brings me comfort to know we are still under the same sky
2019
Oil and alkyd on canvas on panel
48x40x1.75 in.
They say the world will make you hard, but I hope I can keep my tenderness
2019
Oil and alkyd on canvas on panel
10x10x1.75 in.
I spent my time casting spells to wish you well
2019
Oil and alkyd on canvas on panel
24x24x1.75 in.

Artist Information

County
Baltimore City
Artistic Category

Visual Arts

Artist Statement

My work pushes notions of androgyny and queer, combining both masculine and feminine qualities to establish something that is gender-neutral, gender fluid, transgender, or genderqueer. My practice serves as rigorous experimentation that employs a scientific approach; I often juggle multiple paintings and add layers simultaneously to each current work, marginally altering a property to study the outcome. I also employ craft materials, primarily glitter, in order to recall femme, makeup, club, or drag cultures. Assorted recipes bring about diverse results, allowing my work to be a survey of potentially queer objects. Being a painter who is strongly concerned with materiality, I allow the physicality of my work to arise from the alchemy of the paint. I often use various mediums and processes to create paint from scratch, break it down, change opacity and viscosity, adjust chromatic properties, or alter surface qualities as I feel needed. Various types of paint mixtures are layered over time, only to be smeared, scraped, and sanded, charging the work with a visceral energy that refers back to the physicality of process and the body. The process of covering and erasing these layers I have built up creates a back-and-forth of additive and subtractive, an accumulation and a diminishing. My current paintings revolve around the notion of creating space, particularly through abstraction from a queer perspective with a playful awkwardness. These self-contained worlds are made up of repeating stripes, gradated forms, twisted squiggles, and organic shapes. Skewed geometry with hard edges flirt with expressive grounds and fields of color, creating an ambiguous space that is dizzying, strange, and dynamic. The quirky geometry and irregularity of patterns allow for vulnerable and imperfect moments, and are equally about sameness as they are about difference. The work, both as physical objects and as windows into an illusionistic world, suggests a transfer between states— erratic and ever-evolving.

Artist Bio

Cat Gunn is an artist living and working in Baltimore who identifies as non-binary transgender and queer. They create abstract paintings with layers of oil paints and mediums built up over time, using a variety of techniques to manipulate the alchemy of the paint. Gunn has recently exhibited work at Maryland Art Place in Baltimore, MD, 40 West Arts Gallery in Lakewood, CO, Ashton Gallery in San Diego, CA, Da Vinci Art Alliance in Philadelphia, PA, and Cade Art Gallery in Arnold, MD among others.

 

Gunn received a BFA in Painting from Towson University.