AIKI (Karen Kelley)



Photo Credit: Traci Anderson, Noxie Studio
Email: Aiki_dbrave@hotmail.com

Artist Bio

Born in Chicago, I graduated from Sarah Lawrence College in 1962 with a concentration in painting. While at Sarah Lawrence I had the great privilege and life changing experience of taking Joseph Campbell’s course, Folklore and Mythology. I have lived for extensive periods in Rome, Paris and Kingston, Jamaica.

I have worked steadily at my art since 1962, and have had several shows in New York, including a solo exhibition at The College of New Rochelle. I’ve exhibited at Tribal Spears Gallery in Harlem in a two-woman exhibition with my daughter, photographer Jesi Kelley, and in We Are Still Here, curated by Marline A. Martin at Arts Horizons.

My work comes from my experience as an undocumented Native Womyn. Color, line, light combine with images about shifting identity, perceptions, reality, and abstractions. I explore the essential nature of womyn, freeing my vision from the constraints of my formal, Bauhaus influenced training, from the European male definition of ART. I use humor and sometimes the ‘side-eye’ to engage in a dialogue with the viewer, to confront clichés about “woman’s art” and what is trivial and what is profound.