Photo by Denny Culbert
“Her work documents small, intimate histories of characters we’ll never actually meet, but we certainly know the likes of.” ~Kat Kinsman, CNN’s Eatocracy
* * *
Amy's witty, surrealist-inspired paintings are documents of specific moments in time. But those moments live her imagination and are captured in paint.
It all starts with an object. Amy seeks out vintage packaging, fabric, and accessories to illustrate the lives of the women she imagines through her compositions. When seemingly unrelated objects fall next to each other, they add unexpected meaning to the mundane and become portraits, the individual elements coming together to offer a peek into the imagined lives of Amy’s cast of characters.
* * *
Amy grew up in Houston, Texas, where she attended the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts. She continued her art training in Baltimore, Maryland, where she received a B.F.A. from the Maryland Institute College of Art. After a short stint in Savannah, Georgia, and then a longer stay back in her hometown of Houston, Amy set her sights on Oxford, Mississippi, where she obtained an M.A. in Southern Studies from the University of Mississippi. She called Mississippi home for 13 years, working as the lead oral historian for the Southern Foodways Alliance and continuing to make paintings, many of which were inspired by her fieldwork.
A documentarian by trade, Amy is always seeking out stories. Whether by picking up an old lard can at an antique mall and wondering about the life of its previous owner, or interviewing a soul food cook about his signature sweet potato pie*, Amy is endlessly inspired by the lives of others.
Today, Amy is back in Houston, still in search of vintage objects, stories, and pie.
*Amy’s very favorite sweet potato pie is made by Mr. Walter Sculark of Drew, Mississippi.
Koelsch Gallery - Houston, TX
* * *