Katie DeGroot discusses her painting “Vogue: House of Trees II,” 2020, currently on view at the Albany Institute of History & Art.
“In my studio, I have a collection of about 30 different objects that I call my muses. I collect them next to the road or in wildlife preserves (with permission). The thing that draws me to the object is some obsessive covering of fern or mushrooms and some quirkiness about an actual object.
I did singular pieces for a long time, but I started thinking about Gladys Nilsson, one of my favorite artists, and this wonderful painting called "Cocktail Party." It's a compressed little painting, probably 8x10 inches, and it's packed with high heels and cocktail glasses and people talking, and there's no sense of actual real space; there's just a wonderful jumble of people and cocktail glasses. I liked that idea and realized that my trees could interact, so I started setting up vignettes and working from them.”
Watch this video to learn more about the artists that inspire Katie and the process she uses to paint with watercolor and gauche.