In this new series of paintings and screen prints, Karen Ann Myers continues to explore what it means to be a young woman in contemporary society. Rooted in self-portraiture and autobiography, her paintings are documents that capture both the world around her and within her. Myers approaches her paintings like short stories or mini-narratives that are influenced by her intimate experiences with friends, family, and lovers. While the female figures that she depicts are often strong and confident in their sexuality, the paintings also offer a glimpse into the confusion and doubt felt by women in their moments of solitude. In this way, her paintings serve as psychological self-portraits. Each one is a reflection of feelings and experiences that she has lived through, as well as a projection of the moods and emotions experienced while painting them.
Myers also imparts these paintings with an emphasis on sex and glamour inspired by the cult of beauty in today’s mass media. In exploring how this world affects her central female figures—how beauty can be used to camouflage feelings of isolation, addiction and fear, and how sex, desire and intimacy can be misleading and destructive—she strives to present a personal yet universal depiction of women that invites the viewer to question their continuing struggles.
Whether her images evoke a narrative, explore a relationship dynamic or focus on a solitary figure, the duality of three-dimensional human forms juxtaposed against the flat, intricately patterned surroundings in each painting offers an opportunity to better understand her private person and life.
Karen Ann Myers is a graduate of Boston University (MFA, 2008) and Michigan State University (BFA, 2005). Thinking of You is her first exhibition in Los Angeles. In addition to being an artist, she is executive director of Redux Contemporary Art Center, in Charleston, South Carolina. Her work has been exhibited at Robert Steele Gallery, New York; Danforth Museum of Art, MA; Katzen Arts Center, Washington, D.C.; 808 Gallery, Boston; Metrospace, East Lansing; and SCOOP Contemporary, Charleston, SC, among other venues.