Life and Vitality: Painting and Portraiture by Katherine Bennett

A print of a woman wearing a head scarf and sunglassesJosie, graphic print on metal

Katherine Bennett is a painter and illustrator currently based in Ontario. In her artistic practice, Katherine paints and draws female figures engaged in everyday activities, or looking out at the viewer with a certain sense of life and vitality

A drawing of a woman smoking next to another woman in beduntitled (eight), pencil on tinted paper


I really like the way Katherine’s style varies according to medium. The artist’s Faces series comprises graphic prints on metal, and the portraits here reflect a clean, pared-down, digital aesthetic with flat planes of colour that are reminiscent of cartoons and animation. The economy of colour and texture in these works allows them to function really well as a series, I think, and encourages the viewer to focus on the differences -- and similarities -- between the many faces therein. 

A screen capture of Katherine Bennett's art portfolio


In other traditional paintings and drawings, Katherine embraces a more textured, gestural aesthetic. In her Wander series, the artist uses a recurring motif of string spread between her figures’ fingers in a woven cat’s cradle pattern. Small details like this throughout Katherine’s portfolio lend a sense of depth to relatively simple compositions.

A painting of a woman sitting on a car in a fieldmaiden with a camera, oil on wood panel

Written by: Dallas Jeffs
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