Kai Chen

Graduate Fellowships, 2018 - 2019
San Francisco Art Institute

A portrait of a person in front of a yellow sunburst pattern.

Artist Statement

“Instead of making cathedrals out of Christ, man, or ‘life,’ we are making it out of ourselves, out of our own feelings.” (The Sublime Is Now, Barnett Newman) Through my art project, queer Sublime, I am unfolding the collective trauma and terror that exists underneath the queer body, confronting the homophobic repression and violence from the heteronormative society, and making sublimity out of unspoken queer feelings.

While at Headlands

I plan to expand my painting project queer Sublime to a larger scale to explore further the possibility of drawing with colored pencils to express more profound emotion and spiritual consciousness. I believe everything is interconnected and we are all particles of nature. The ocean and hills at Headlands are what I need, to be surrounded by the tremendous energy of life and to be inspired and learn from it. Through abstraction and drawing with colors, I create a space of meditation and a utopia for everyone who doesn’t feel belonging anywhere, who is trying to find a place in a world that’s not signed by them.