"2023 International" at The Center for Contemporary Art"
The Center for Contemporary Art, "2023 International"
Exhibition Dates: January 20, 2023 – March 3, 2023
Opening: Friday, January 20 from 6-8 pm.
Juror: Esteban del Valle
"Drawing Discourse" at UNC Asheville
University of North Carolina (Asheville) at S. Tucker Cooke Gallery
Drawing Discourse: 14th Annual Exhibition of Contemporary Drawing
Exhibition Dates: January 13-February 10
Opening January 13th 6-8pm
Juror: Charles Ritchie
"Primordial Soup" featured at RMU's Media Arts Gallery
Robert Morris University: Media Arts Gallery
Exhibition: January 17 – March 17, 2023
"During a time of extremes – weather, politics, anxieties, etc. –we’d like to see artists’ own creative response to what is going on in their world."--- juried by Andrew Y. Ames and Christine Holtz.
"Growth" opens at AAP Gallery
Associated Artists of Pittsburgh “Growth”
Exhibition Dates: January 17 – February 18, 2023.
January 14, 2023 4:00-7:00pm
Collaboration with Creative Citizen Studios
Made possible by the Arts, Equity, and Education Fund (https://www.aeefund.org/)
Jurors: Disparate Minds
“GROWTH features a selection of artists that reflects diverse approaches to art-making – from abstract to representational, personal to universal, the handmade to digital--offering a glimpse into the wide range of complex works currently being produced by Pittsburgh-based artists,” notes Disparate Minds team Andreana Donahue and Tim Ortiz. “Our primary curatorial focus for this group exhibition has been to highlight connections between artists from CCS and AAP, in both creative process and relationship to the overarching concept of growth.”
"Abstract" Opens at Macon Arts Alliance
"Art of the State" Opens at the State Museum of Pennsylvania
“Art of the State” is an annual juried exhibition that has been showcasing the work of Pennsylvania’s artists at The State Museum of Pennsylvania since 1968. The body of art that has been exhibited reflects over a half-century of creative endeavor in the Keystone State. Through the years, artists have shared their ideas and engaged viewers in the categories of painting, photography, craft, sculpture, and work on paper.
The exhibit includes 104 works of art from 104 artists from 31 counties. The jurors are: Julia Dolan, Ph.D., The Minor White Curator of Photography, Portland Art Museum; Joyce Owens, Artist, Educator, and Curator, Chicago State University; Matthew Hinçman, Professor and Program Area Coordinator, Sculpture, and Furniture Design Certificate Program Coordinator, Massachusetts College of Art and Design; and Al Miner, Director of Georgetown University Galleries and Associate Professor of the Practice.
The 54th Annual “Art of the State” exhibition, on view at The State Museum of Pennsylvania September 26, 2021 through January 2, 2022.
"Ossuary" Opens at the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design
Originally inspired by curator Laurie Beth Clark’s research at repositories of bones in countries where mass violence has occurred, “OSSUARY: A Project by Laurie Beth Clark” features more than 300 artists and more than 340 total works comprised of or themed around bones. Nearly half of the artists are Wisconsin artists. The exhibition is on view in the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design’s (MIAD) Frederick Layton Gallery January 13 – March 7, 2020.
January 17, 5 – 9 p.m. Opening Reception during Gallery Night in the Third Ward. Artists’ reception begins at 7 p.m.
February 26, 7 – 8 p.m. Curator Talk – “OSSUARY: A Repository of Bones”
While the exhibition inspiration stems from traumas, the exhibit celebrates resilience and the ways artists create counter images that are hopeful or poignant rejoinders.
“The contributions are political statements and personal elegies, memorials to individuals or statements about mortality. They represent connections to ancestors and/or descendants. Some are serious, and some use bones in a completely playful manner,” according to Clark.
"Drawing at the Edge of Perception" Opens at (SCENE) Metrospace, Michigan State University
In the midst of a technological renaissance there is a seismic shift in our sense of what illusion in art is capable of and how the viewer can interact with it. Curator Benjamin Swallow Duke explores how contemporary artists use drawing or drawing inspired work that explores the boundaries of perception in its broadest sense. From Rorschach to dream imagery, Anamorphosis to optical illusions—this work asks the viewer to confront themselves and the world anew. Visionary work that looks around the corner of possibility, drawings that make visible the boundary of what it means to see.
“Drawings at the Edge of Perception” at Michigan State University’s (SCENE) Metrospace in East Lansing, MI, on view September 13 through October 25.
"Tropic of Color" reviewed in City Paper
"Monochrome" Opens at Gallery 311
The Bradley International Print and Drawing Exhibition is the second-longest running juried print and drawing competition in the country. Every two years it features the best contemporary graphic artwork from around the globe. Traditional and non-traditional graphic media, including printmaking, drawing, book arts, and experimental techniques are represented in the show.
This year’s BI features 134 works of art by 109 artists from across the globe and will be held at seven prominent Peoria Illinois Galleries, The Contemporary Art Center of Peoria, Prairie Center of the Arts, Studios on Sheridan, Illinois Central College, Peoria Art Guild, and on campus at Bradley University at Heuser Art Gallery and Hartmann Center Gallery. The 37th Bradley International was juried by Janet Ballweg and is on view March 9 through April 12.
Group Exhibition, "Tropic of Color" Opens at Vestige Gallery
"Trumpet to the Tulips" reviewed in City Paper
"The experimentation drives the collaborative works, all of which loom large in the gallery on huge canvases as if begging you to search out each artist’s contributions. Examining each piece becomes a bit of an interactive exercise, engaging the viewer with swaths of intermingled imagery. ...Trumpet to the Tulips stands as a testament to the power of collaboration, as the artists eliminate the competitive need to stand out and allow their work to flow together, producing a collection of dynamic and expressive works."
Made in Pgh reviews "Trumpet to the Tulips"
"Vibrant colors and large canvases helped make the gallery space feel very intimate. Overall, the collection came together very cohesively for a great viewing experience. " -Katherine Lewis
"Trumpet to the Tulips" Opens at SPACE
Kristen Letts Kovak curated the three person exhibition “Trumpet to the Tulips,” featuring independent and collaborative works by Kovak, Sarah Jacobs, and Katherine Tzu-Lan Mann. The exhibition is on view at SPACE in Pittsburgh November 15, 2019 through March 15, 2020.
“Every once in a while one should do a crazy experiment, like blowing the trumpet to the tulips every morning for a month. Probably nothing would happen, but what if it did?” –George Darwin
The first night that I met Katherine and Sarah, the idea for “Trumpet to the Tulips” was born. We immediately discovered commonalities among our painting practices. We each systematically established patterns, with the end goal of later negating them, and approached experimentation quite methodically. Yet, we also shared a desire to be more adaptive in our approaches. So, we formulated a game to disrupt our existing strategies. We decided to each create one new work that combined elements of the other artists’ paintings . . . probably nothing would happen, but what if it did?.
The paintings in this exhibition are a combination of our independent and collective voices. There are paintings created before our first meeting, artworks produced in response to the game, and collaborative paintings shipped between cities where we worked directly on top of each other’s marks. Additionally, there are a large number of works created within the last year that reflect how each of our painting practices has shifted as a result of our collaboration. We each blew our trumpets in counterpoint and a collective melody emerged.
"_______." Reviewed in City Paper
"_______." Reviewed in the Pittsburgh Tribune
"Kristen Letts Kovak of Regent Square said Yasko asked the photographers to let go of their control. She chose to use a cheap disposable camera as did several other photographers. That meant that she couldn’t adjust the settings, fix the image in Photoshop, control the quality and scale of the print, or even choose what images would ultimately appear in the exhibition. She said she didn’t want to reveal details of her photos.
“It’s a secret,” she said.
“In the spirit of the project, I decided to never look through the camera lens, either,” she said. “Seeing the images collectively on display, revealed a lot about how each artist approached the work. For some, the series revealed a sequential narrative whereas for others, the images were technical deviations from each other in the search for a singular completed image.” --Joanne Klimovich Harrop
"________." Opens at SPACE gallery
An exhibition of 1,921 photographs that have never been seen before — even by the photographers who took them.
May 31–August 4, 2019
Gallery Crawl: July 12, 2019 - 5:30-10pm (free and open to the public)
Brett Yasko asked 87 Pittsburgh artists to each shoot a roll of 35mm film and return it back to him, undeveloped. What he asked to be documented is between him and each of them. Just like you, the artists won't see the results of their work until they enter the gallery.
College Art Association's Committee on Women in the Arts higlights "Dinosaurs in the Dollhouse"
"This process and collaborative oriented exhibit includes paintings by artists Sarah Jacobs, Kristen Letts Kovak, and Katherine Tzu-Lan Mann around legacy, possibility and evolving context. One individually completed painting by each artist is complemented by another that was influenced by the paintings by the other two artists. Moreover, the trio will create a collaborative painting in the gallery during the exhibition’s run that will be finished by the end. Katherine Tzu-Mann’s expansive, expressive colorful paintings explore how painting can “capture flux, abundance, waste, fertility, and the collision and collusion of diverse forms” from material, to process to their animated result of shapes, moving lines and colors. Also rich in movement and hue, Kristen Letts Kovak’s paintings seem to take more botanical form, if imagined, as the artist explains her more intuitive approach, her paintings are “both records of my perceptions, and independent objects for observation.” Sarah Jacobs’ process is pattern-driven, meticulously hand-painted, bright and complex work that relates to human vulnerability. The artists share a mentor, who provided impetus for the title reflecting artists’ perhaps seemingly random yet purposely juxtaposed choices."
"Dinosaur in the Dollhouse" opens at Carlow College
“Dinosaur in the Dollhouse” is a collaborative exhibition of the paintings of artists Kristen Letts Kovak, Sarah Jacobs, and Katherine Tzu-Lan Mann. The exhibition is on view January 31 through April 19 at the Carlow University Art Gallery.
The artists’ practices each carry on the torch of tradition but are equally footed in legacy and possibility. Once established, their patterns are broken, and unpredictable references are allotted space within their images. Yet, they consciously don’t throw out the baby with the bathwater in favor of radical new practices. These three artists add the new to the old, not to replace it, but to change its context.
“Dinosaur in the Dollhouse” includes one painting by each artist that is already completed, as well as a second painting that has been influenced by the paintings being exhibited by the other two artists. The three artists will then collaborate on a painting that will be on display in the gallery and finished by the end of the semester.
The title of the exhibit comes from Timothy App, a painting mentor to all three artists, who would tell the story to his students about watching his granddaughter play with her dollhouse. She noticed a toy dinosaur next to her, picked it up, and put it in the dollhouse. She continued to play with the dollhouse for a while and then finally decided to remove the dinosaur from the dollhouse. App would use the story as a metaphor for what painters do with images.
"Artists Who Teach" Opens at the Westmoreland Museum of American Art
Saturday, August 25 from 6:30-8pm
In the latest featured exhibition at The Westmoreland, the Cantilever Gallery is brimming with contemporary artworks created in a broad range of mediums—painting, sculpture, photography, video, stained glass, installation and mixed media.
While the works themselves explore diverse themes using various techniques and materials, each of the artists in this exhibition share one thing in common—they all teach at one of the numerous colleges and universities in our region.
Artists Who Teach celebrates the incredible talent and broad range of art making in this region today. The 58 artists in this exhibition are all inspiring the next generation of artists by teaching at Carlow University, Carnegie Mellon University, Chatham University, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Robert Morris University, Seton Hill University, Saint Vincent College, University of Pittsburgh/University of Pittsburgh-Greensburg and Westmoreland County Community College.
"Comparison for Critical Distance
Black Bucket Essays: Vol II: Issue I
AAP New Member Exhibition opens at Butler Street Lofts
August 4 - 19, 2018
Juried & Curated by Eowyn Mays, National Gallery of Art.
"Six Feet" Opens at Ice House Studios (AAP
Curatorial project, "Identity Play" opens at SPACE
he Pittsburgh Cultural Trust announces the opening of Identity Play, a new exhibition at SPACE Gallery, 812 Liberty Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15222, June 22 through August 19. Curated by Kristen Letts Kovak, the exhibit features works by eight locally- and nationally-based artists. An opening reception will be held in conjunction with the summer Gallery Crawl on July 6 from 5:30-10:00pm, and a walkthrough with the curator will be held on August 4, 2018.
The exhibition brings together the works of Bibiana Suárez, Scott Andrew, Atom Atkinson, Patty Carroll, Zoë Charlton, Rick Delaney, John Peña, and Imin Yeh. These artists create games, play house, build models, and play dress-up, cleverly applying complex commentary to innocuous forms. “Identity Play explores the role of whimsy in the earnest search for self,” explains Kovak. “The artists in this exhibition use the strategies of childhood to explore the complexities of adulthood. They discover, shift, reveal, and redefine the parameters of identity, addressing the liminal space between innermost worlds and external self.” ...
"Portals" Opens at 707 Penn Gallery
"White Noise" Solo Exhibition at York College
In our current political climate, contradictory observations are amassed and arranged into potential truths. We attempt to discern moments of clarity from moments of fabricated design. Faced with incompatible interpretations, we struggle in a web of polarized black and white realities spun so densely as to appear gray.
This body of work is a visual meditation on intense observation. Instead of filtering through the noise to arrive at clarity, I record my visual aberrations and tangents. The marks convey so many contradictory points of focus that realities become intertwined and individual signification is lost. Even nuance is reduced to a hum of animated white noise. The drawn forms vacillate between object and atmosphere (fact and context) to create a cacophonous volume so loud as to become deafeningly quiet.
"Barely Breathing" Opens at Ice House Studios (AAP
"110 x 110 x 110" Opens at Ice House Studios, AAP
Two Person Exhibition with Sylvija Singh, "Vessels in Five Dimensions", Opens at Touchstone Center for Crafts
“Vessels in Five Dimensions” explores the spatial fluidity between two-dimensional images and three-dimensional forms. Kristen Letts Kovak and Sylvija Singh construct vessels that imply meaning but lessen function. Kovak’s paintings depict forms whose cultural context has been removed or interrupted. Similarly, Singh’s graceful ceramic forms are pieced together with slabs, revealing a collection of gaps affecting their function as vessels. Both artists use the variability of light and individual perception to push the boundaries of height, width, and depth. “Vessels in Five Dimensions” is on view at the Touchstone Center for Crafts in Farmington, PA, June 2 – July 27.
City Paper reviews "Memoria"
"At first, the feeling is joy. Memory! An extra-large version of the game you loved as a kid: 54 pairs of cards fill two walls in Memoria, matches turned right-side up on a table. You start to play. There’s an El Gallo. Where’s the second Speedy Gonzales? Then you look closer and realize the cards each represent something from Latino culture. On the unturned cards, a pattern that artist Bibiana Suárez created using names and slurs for Latinos, including the racist “wetback” and others. The fun ends. How hard is it to remember how much the Latino community has contributed to this country? The game turns into a lesson — an incredibly artistic and beautiful lesson, but a lesson, nonetheless — that’s hard to forget. " -Lisa Cunningham
707/709 Artist Interview--EXTENDED
"This precise, laser-focused attention to detail and control Kovak wields is anything but lost on her artistic practice."
"Sourced from Pittsburgh’s own Carnegie Museum of Art to foreign collections from around the world, Kovak constructs and obliterates museum displays with her balanced use of representation and abstraction. Her work invites viewers to examine not just the artifacts she depicts but the way in which they are preserved and exhibited as well."
707/709 Artist Interview
"...Kovak’s work invites viewers to examine not just the artifacts she vividly depicts but also the way in which they are preserved and exhibited. In On Looking, reflections in glass cases one would typically ignore become focal points in Kovak’s paintings. By reaching beyond the paper’s edge in White Noise, Kovak’s installation forces viewers to observe further as she brings out mundane to bizarre structural elements of the gallery itself..."
"White Noise" and "On Looking" reviewed by Local Pittsburgh
"Walk into 707 and 709 Galleries this week, and you will enter a dual exhibition – one a series of shockingly colorful paintings and the other of almost disorientingly intricate drawings, all meant to make you more aware of the environment around you, both artificial, personal and political..."
"But the art in Kovak’s exhibit is not only about our experience of a place, rather it is ultimately about how we perceive and treat these objects. In The Wonder of Human Ingenuity, Kovak paints a museum room that recreates the curiosity cabinets or wunderkammer. By filling it with primarily natural objects – fossils, stuffed birds, skulls – she exposes the human obsession with ownership of the exotic..."
"However, the most captivating thing about the exhibit is the wall drawing. The moment one steps into the space, they notice the grey painted walls, and the pencil marks etched over them. Kovak outlined shadows, created fabricated reflections of light switches, scrawled in bumps on the walls that aren’t there and more..."
"On Looking" opens at 707 Penn Gallery
“On Looking” is a solo exhibition of oil paintings on wooden panel. It represents highlights from an ongoing series of work exploring the visual idiosyncrasies of the heightened museum environment.
November 17-January 28
"White Noise" opens at 709 Penn Gallery
“White Noise” is solo exhibition of works on paper and site-specific wall drawings that searches for a balance between the chaos of perceptual noise and the subtlety of nuanced observation.
November 17-January 28
Featured in Cultural Trust publication, "John Riegert"
This over 700 page book was beautifully designed by Brett Yasko and includes an epic essay by writer Eric Lidji chronicling his experiences working with artists throughout the "John Riegert" project and documenting the final exhibition at SPACE.
One of the chapters humorously retells the day that John sat nude for his portrait with me. Eric poetically describes his experiences viewing my work:
"The complexity pushed against the boundary where comprehensible becomes confusion. It reminded me of swimming in the ocean, where the destructive power of the water is always present in your mind, even when you feel capable of making it back to shore."
Cameo in Documentary Short Film "The John Show"
"Synopsis: Graphic designer Brett Yasko wanted to save his friend John’s life, so he asked every artist in their town to make a portrait of John. The result is the 2016 art show “John Riegert” – a funhouse containing 250 portraits on the titular subject, with John himself acting as tour guide. This heartfelt story chronicles the making of a singular exhibit and the mental health struggles and personal triumphs of its subject."
Directed by: Julie Sokolow
Produced by: Olivia Vaughn, Ryan Loew
Group A "75th Anniverary Exhibiiton" Opens at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts and New Media
Curated by Vicky A Clark
Nov. 30th - jan. 21 2018/19
Pittsburgh Center for the Arts and New Media
opening reception november 30th 6-9pm
Featured in new book, "The Femmes Folles: The Women, 2016"
Kristen Letts Kovak is featured in the new book, “Les Femmes Folles: The Women, 2016”. This feminist text chronicles artworks and interview exerts from the associated online anthology of contemporary female artists.
"When I was a graduate student, I had the opportunity to have dinner with Joyce Kozloff and thank her personally for her contribution to women in the arts. It is because of pioneers like her, that I grew up never doubting that I could be an artist. While my current work does not directly reference feminism, having the choice to create whatever work I feel most passionate about, is itself an act of feminism and a privilege that I do not take lightly." -Letts Kovak
Post-Gazette Review: John Riegert at SPACE
“...After meeting him, I realized, of course. It couldn’t be anyone else,” said contributing artist Kristen Letts Kovak.
He was humble and so willing to be vulnerable that he posed nude in his living room for her, she said.
In return, the artist pushed herself out of her comfort zone by using pencil on wood. It’s one of the most vulnerable mediums, she said, because any erase marks are highly visible..."
PASTE Review: John Riegert at SPACE
Pittsburgh City Paper Review(2): John Riegert at SPACE
Herald-Standard Review: John Riegert at SPACE
Pittsburgh City Paper Review (1): John Riegert at SPACE
"John Riegert" opens at SPACE
One of the Largest Group Exhibitions to be Displayed Downtown in Pittsburgh’s History
June 24 – September 4, 2016 | SPACE | Liberty Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA;The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust announces the opening of John Riegert, curated by Brett Yasko. The 252 portraits of John Riegert have been developed through sessions spanning over nearly two years and hosted at studios, coffee shops, parks, museums, riverbanks, universities, cemeteries, artists’ homes and John’s own home as well. The work in the exhibit ranges from paintings to sculptures to conceptual pieces to performances to photographs to films and videos.
The unprecedented exhibit will be on display Friday, June 24 through September 4, 2016. Additionally, the exhibit opening will be part of the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s free quarterly Gallery Crawl taking place on Friday, July 8 from 5:30 p.m. until 10:00 p.m.
Awarded College Teaching Fellowship
2016-2017 Wimmer Faculty Fellowship for the Development of Teaching
Eberly Center for Teaching Excellence and Educational Innovation at Carnegie Mellon University
Degrees of Seperation Opens At SPACE
My curatorial project "Degrees of Separation" is now open at SPACE gallery in Pittsburgh and runs until June 5, 2016.
The exhibition is a mediation of distance: physical, spiritual, and visual. It features the work of artists from around the US: Tamara Cedré, Nicole Herbert, Michael Dax Iacovone, Nate Larson, and Carlene Muñoz as well as four excellent Pittsburgh artists: Daniel Pillis, Derek Reese, Scott Turri, and Barbara Weissberger.
The opening reception will be held at SPACE on Friday, April 22nd from 5:30-10pm.
I will also be doing a curatorial walk-through on Saturday, April 30th from 1-2pm. (Both events are free and open to the public.)
Les Femmes Folles
Transcript of my interview with Sally Deskins.
Pittsburgh Tribune Review: "Works"
"...The second exhibit visitors will come to is Group A's “Works,” which features 16 pieces selected by fellow member artist Todd Keyser.
Here, abstract pieces abound, such as the painting “Monserrate” by Kristen Letts Kovak of Regent Square, which is a jarring conglomeration drawn from actual observation and memory.
“I use the spatial fluidity of painting as a stand-in for the inconsistencies of visual perception,” she says. “Observations can seem spatially illogical, visually obstructed, or abruptly partitioned. When reconstructing such moments, I pursue representation and abstraction alongside each other — searching for pictorial resolution in spite of spatial inconsistencies...”
"The Problem with Social Practice"
Black Bucket Essays: Vol I: Issue V
"We are at now, now"
Black Bucket Essays: Vol I: Issue IV
"First Impressions" Opens at A.I.R.
Invitation through Group A, Exhibition Juried by Petra Fallaux
Artists Image Resource April 17-May 22nd
Black Bucket Essays: Vol I: Issue III
"Keep Art Weird"
Black Bucket Essays: Vol I: Issue II
"Cycle of Hubris"
Black Bucket Essays: Vol I: Issue I
WAH Center Juror's Award
Claire Gilman of the Drawing Center (NYC) awarded "Permutations" with the Juror's Special Merit Award from among 300+ pieces selected for the exhibition, "Paperworks Unbound".
2015 Hoyt Regional Juried Exhibition
Exhibition Juried by Dan Byers (Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Carnegie Museum of Art). "Monserrate" is currently on view in the main gallery. March 17-May 8, 2015
"Over the Edge: Paperworks Unbound" Opens in Brooklyn
Williamsburg Art and Historical Center: Brooklyn, NY
“Over the Edge: Paperworks Unbound”
Juried by Claire Gilman
Co-Curated by Yuko Nii and Rebecca Cuomo
This group exhibition features “Permutations”, my recent 23ft scroll painted with meandering patterns within a superstructure.
Opening: Saturday, October 25, 2014 4-6pm
Exhibition runs until November 23rd.
"Peddling Personalities" Opens at Westmoreland Museum of Art
Westmoreland Museum of American Art: Greensburg, PA
Curated by Joan McGarry
This exhibition pairs contemporary approaches to still life with historic portraits-investigating links between observation and the staging of personae.
Opening: Saturday, October 25, 2014 3-5pm
Exhibition runs through February 2015.
"Cataloguing Pattern" to open at SPACE
Pittsburgh, PA—The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust presents the visual art exhibition "Cataloguing Pattern", a collaborative meditation on the role of pattern in artistic practice. The exhibition is on view July 11–August 31, 2014, at SPACE. An opening reception takes place Friday, July 11, from 5:30–9 p.m., during the Trust’s quarterly Gallery Crawl throughout the Cultural District.
The exhibition, guest organized by Kristen Letts Kovak, investigates the links between visual, perceptual, and cognitive patterning, and it features more than 50 artworks by nine artists. Each artist chose one aspect of patterning to investigate: seriality, rhythm, rehearsal, behavior, permutation, morphology, expectation, and repetition.
Participating Artists: Salinda Deery, Aaron Henderson and Ted Coffey, Kristin Kest, Todd Keyser, Kristen Letts Kovak, Maria Mangano, Brooke Sturtevant-Sealover, Rebecca Zilinski
Pittsburgh Articulate, Review: Cataloguing Pattern
Pittsburgh Tribune, Review: Cataloguing Pattern
"...Paintings like this reveal pattern to be more than ornamental. “It reflects our desire for order and predictability,” Letts Kovak says. “It is through recognizable patterns that we categorize the unknown, predict others' behaviors and determine our own course of action.”
Yet, the artists in this exhibit demonstrate that breaking an existing pattern can be more significant than establishing one.
Perhaps no one does this better than Letts Kovak. Her “Permutations” is a 23-foot-long scroll, hung floor to ceiling, with hand-drawn and -painted patterns inspired by those seen in everything from wallpaper to Renaissance tapestries.
“This painted scroll is a study in tangential order — continually shifting between convergent and divergent thinking, acceptance and rejection,” Letts Kovak says. “It is a conglomeration of unaffiliated patterns connected through stream of consciousness.”
In this way, Letts Kovak investigates a system of mutating anomalies that work to form new patterns.
“I started with a very single goal: make a system, break a system,” she says. “But, by doing that, it created its own sort of system. By consistently interlacing conformity with chaos, I established an unintended pattern and emergent superstructure.”
Broadway World reviews "Cataloguing Pattern"
"Kristen Letts Kovak integrates historically and culturally unrelated patterns into singular images. By imposing patterns onto an unfamiliar context, she interrupts the established design and creates new visual alliterations. The resulting paintings continuously slide between tangents and a larger superstructure." - Tyler Peterson
Social Media Interview: Permutations
"So What Do You Do For a Living?: A Case Study in the Social Perception of Artists"