Artist StatementThrough large-scale painting and installation, Katie Pumphrey’s work explores the tension between calm and chaos. Crisp edges and quiet shapes are at a constant teeter totter with playful movement and vibrating color. With turbulent brushstrokes and the suggestion of imagery, her work examines themes of reflex, territory, and instinct. In her most recent body of work, Pumphrey explores the repeated process of settling into a space or moment, making it your own, and finding comfort — only to have the situation change. You lose control, the lights go out, a wave comes — the moment forces the meter to reset, and yet again, you have to start from the beginning. You find yourself in a dark room or an overwhelming space, and you scramble to find your footing and move forward. These moments shift over and over again. You rearrange the room, ease the tension, and harness the chaos.
Katie Pumphrey is an artist living and working in Baltimore, MD. Katie has a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Maryland Institute College of Art. She has participated in artist residencies at the Studios of Key West, Vermont Studio Center, Gallery Four, and the Creative Alliance in Baltimore. Her work has been exhibited nationally, including solo exhibitions in Baltimore, Washington DC, Alexandria, and Key West. Katie is also a long distance, open water swimmer — who swam the English Channel in 2015, around the island of Manhattan in 2017, and the Catalina Channel in 2018. Those three swims make up the Triple Crown of open water swimming, adding Katie to a elite group of open water swimmers from around the world. This aspect of her life often influences and drives her work.