Originally from Argentina and currently pursuing an MA in Animation at the Royal College of Art in London, Kitty Faingold has a painting portfolio that is full of human heads big and small. And eyes – sometimes filling a face or set against plain backdrops – alone, in pairs or large groups. The colours Kitty uses are solid and loud – blue, orange, red, pink, occasionally gold. Emotions of anger and pain naturally emerge. So do themes of judgment and surveillance. Overall, the art retains an attractive hallucinatory air. It looks like an unpacking of the subconscious.
“The language of my work is symbolic and non-verbal, it’s purely visual and should resonate on an emotional, personal level rather than an intellectual one,” says Kitty. “I believe that the function of visual art is to work as an expression of ideas that can’t be otherwise verbalised, a form of communication that runs parallel to verbal language (without many points of contact); if words are sufficient then painting becomes redundant or simply an illustration of a concrete word-idea.”
For this reason, Kitty feels her works cannot be said to contain particular meanings. There are loose ideas and subjects of her interest that are woven into the fabric of her artworks but she never sets out to convey something specific about these concepts through her images. “I suppose I could say,” continues Kitty, “that the only message of my work is that I’m an advocate for the importance of art as a means of expression for the otherwise inexpressible, art as that which engages a side of the human mind that needs to be engaged with, explored, stimulated, expanded. A side that words simply can’t seem to reach.”
Once the image is made, thinks the artist, it takes on a life of its own. Kitty expects people to interpret her art in ways that are natural to them. “I enjoy hearing different interpretations, and respect and encourage the need to express these thoughts,” she adds. “Art can open a conversation. I find this part of the process really interesting, it’s what breathes life into art in general – the viewers and their interpretations!”
Content-wise, Kitty is inspired by history, spirituality, psychology, surrealism, mythology and symbolism – these are the major elements that populate her work. She admires Magritte, Leonora Carrington and De Chirico. “Also painters that use bright colours and simple compositions such as Matisse, in particular his Jazz series,” she says. “I’m inspired by art and graphic design from the 60s, 70s and 80s (album covers, posters, etc.) and animations from the 70s too. I love Ken Price, both his drawings and his sculptures. Then, I am drawn to esoteric and occult philosophies. And, yes, I really like Carl Jung.”
Back in Argentina, Kitty ran a gallery called “Costado” for emerging artists with three fellow artists for five years. She has participated in several group exhibitions and a few solo shows in both South America and Europe.
Images used with permission.