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Kristin Skees

Artist Statement Submitted 2015

My work combines portraiture, knitting, and a love of the macabre that I attribute to growing up in the Southern Gothic culture of Alabama. Like an ill-fitting handmade sweater made by your crazy aunt, the cozies are about how our closest relationships can often walk the fine line between loving and smothering. In the Cozy Portrait series I create a custom cozy for each person in the project – often my close friends and family. From beginning to end, the piece is defined by my relationship, dialog, and collaboration with the person being cozied. The process and the resulting portraits are very specific to each person. But by covering the majority of a person’s identifiable features, they also become abstract and universal. While the final form is a photographic portrait, for me, the piece begins with the first conversation, and the first question: “Can I cozy you?”

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