My series All in the Family celebrates the strong women in my family in vivid and excessive detail. In the work, I use decorative patterns and sickeningly saccharine sweet hues to render bold compositions. Inspired by vintage photographs unearthed from my mother’s basement and retro fashions, I pay tribute to my mother, grandmother and the aunts who were a positive influence on me as I grew into womanhood, even though the world presented them with difficulties as they attempted to pursue their dreams. Sorting through the photographs and reflecting on family memories helped me capture and illustrate the unique personalities of these women, as I deployed my maximalist method using a combination of aerosol and acrylic paint. Through energetic patterning and colors I created whimsically feminine portraits true to the spirit of authentic womanhood. Painting these portraits brought me closer to my family, but most importantly they offer the viewers a window into an authentic slice-of-life of a parade of women from a by-gone era.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Racine, Wisconsin based artist Kelly Witte is a 2010 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Parkside with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Studio Art with concentrations in printmaking and painting. Taking a maximalist approach to her art and working with mixed media techniques she creates kitschy and vividly colored pieces inspired by vintage clothing, classic television sitcoms and frequent excursions to thrift shops and flea markets. Since earning her degree she has been very active in the local visual art community.
Witte regularly exhibits her work regionally and has lent her talents to public art exhibitions and large scale mural projects in the Racine and Kenosha communities. In addition to exhibiting extensively in Southeastern Wisconsin she has had numerous opportunities to exhibit her work at the national and international levels. Nationally, her work has been featured in galleries in Chicago, New York City, Los Angeles, Tampa, Indianapolis, Dallas and Washington D.C. Internationally she has exhibited in The United Arab Emirates, The Netherlands, Sweden, Poland and Australia. Witte’s artwork is held in several private collections throughout the United States and she has had her artwork featured in publications such as Teen Vogue, Huffington Post and The Columbia
© Kelly Witte