Photo credit by Richard Walker @ the Sam and Adele Golden Foundation of the Arts

about Kate

Born in Busan, Korea, Kate Bae holds an MFA from Rhode Island School of Design and a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, both in painting. She currently lives in New York, NY.  


Stress has interesting ways to manifest in one’s body. Mine takes a form of skin picking disorder; I continually peel the skin on the inner corner of my thumb and pull hair. Consequently, I discovered that peeling paint is a very effective way to deal with anxiety which gave me pleasure and satisfaction. This neurosis led me to experiment with paint materials as I peel the acrylic paint skin by casting and pouring the paint. The process ultimately changed the identity of painting; a painting transforms when there are no canvas, brushstrokes nor content, but exists only the material. The painting becomes something else, not quite sculpture -- something in between two and three-dimensional planes, an experience parallel to my own as an immigrant woman.


After pouring and casting the paint, usually with silicone molds or plastic sheets, I wait for the paint to dry and then pull the layers and physically reshape the dried paint bits. Although acrylic paint is a porous medium, when it dries it becomes essentially plastic. My works’ shape takes mostly after nature as I believe it is one of our greatest teachers and healers. The physicality of building paint skins in nature’s form strengthens the feel of human touch. The process helps me see the physical and psychological borders I create, and I search for ways to activate paintings in raw space. The capacity of these paintings gives the possibility of multiple identities, cooperating with a historical condition, memory, and experience of a space.       


For CV click here.