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photo by Daehyun Park

katherine.e.cavanaugh@gmail.com

I grew up in the small, rural college town of Oberlin, OH, and graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2015. Now I live and work in the Chicago, IL neighborhood of Bronzeville, on the south side of the city. When I’m not painting, drawing, or printmaking, I do a lot of unpredictable wage labor, navigate the joys and challenges of life in an affordable housing co-op, and continue my studies and praxis as a communist and Workers World Party candidate. Liberation theology is where it's at.

This all influences the kind of art I make; my family, my faith, and my life as a queer and chronically ill/disabled woman also make appearances. I'm a christian, and I use painting partially as a way to struggle with and question christianity.

I want to spend my life as as artist making work about, for, and in collaboration with my class, the working class. Proletarian art, from quilting to graffiti, is the only art with a pulse, and though I fell in love with easel painting and drawing, and went and got an elite, formal art education, I'm working toward being part of that tradition.  

Working people, queer people, people of color, children, sick and disabled folks, elders, women, housed and homeless, joyful and suffering, all deserve art that reflects our experiences. I'm working toward having an artistic practice that is truly useful to my friends, family, neighbors, and comrades, because we deserve visual art that means something to us, that can help us mourn, celebrate, and understand each other better.

All art is political, passively or actively, so I operate on the strength of my faith in a lack of barriers between studio work and real life as I develop into a better artist, a better communist, and a better Christian.