Narratives Starring Girls: Art by Katherine Bennett
Painter Katherine Bennett draws up imaginary narratives starring girls as complex characters. Each of her works, frequently painted in oil, features a central female figure, often surrounded by a sparse setting or set against a plane of color.
I enjoy the style that Katherine employs in her works. The artist manages to coax a very illustrative look and feel out of oil paint, a medium that lends itself to smooth blending. The artist’s decisions about what to render in detail and what to leave as subtle gesture seem very deliberate – the faces of her figures are always very expressive and fleshed out, whereas the ambiguous backgrounds and settings allow space for interpreting a story, tailoring it to fit a particular mood.
The sketches in Katherine’s what it’s like to be a girl gallery are also quite interesting. In these works, the artist takes a slightly more gestural, illustrative approach to her subject matter. A different angle to the artist’s practice, some of these works also seem as though they could function as sketches, or ideas for later paintings.