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Work Samples

Maximum Value (detail)

#abstractpainting#oil#nasa#auroras
Maximum Value (installation view) Oil on canvas over panel Grid of 100 (12 x 12 inches each) 68 x 268.5 inches (installed)

Maximum Value (left view)

#oilpainting;#auroras;#solarflares
Maximum Value 2014-2016 oil on canvas over panel Grid of 100 (12 x 12 inches each) 68 x 268.5 inches (installed)

CME 1-6 (studio)

#abstractpainting#oil#nasa
CME 1 - 6 (studio) Oil on canvas over panel 18 x 18 inches (each) 2013

Ice Floe 1

#oilpainting;#auroras#solarflares#blackholes#icefloes
Ice Floe 1 2016 Oil on canvas over panel 24 x 24 inches

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About Kate

Baltimore City - Station North A&E District

Kate MacKinnon's picture
I build my paintings out of layers of transparent glaze. This meditative process creates luminous color and a richness of surface that references industrial finishes. I seek a moment of quiet in my work, a deep breath that I hope to share with my audience. Working flat,  I apply thin layers of glaze  to achieve the density of color and surface that I desire, allowing each layer to dry between coats. The glaze is a very liquid mixture of oil paint and a high gloss painting medium.  The... more

Climate Change 2016 - ongoing

Ongoing material studies exploring the physical effects of climate change

  • Riverbed 1

    #abstractpainting#acrylic#climate change
    Riverbed 1 acrylic on panel 8 x 8 inches 2017
  • Riverbed 2

    #abstractpainting#acrylic#climate change
    Riverbed 2 Acrylic on panel 8 x 8 inches 2017
  • Riverbed 3

    #abstractpainting#oil#climate change
    Riverbed 3 Oil on Panel 8 x 8 inches 2017
  • Ice Floe 1

    #abstractpainting#oil#climate change#polarcaps
    Ice Floe 1 Oil on canvas over panel 24 x 24 inches 2016
  • Ice Floe 2

    #abstractpainting#oil#climate change#polarcaps
    Ice Floe 2 Oil on canvas over panel 24 x 24 inches 2016
  • Ice Floe 4

    #abstractpainting#oil#climate change#polarcaps
    Ice Floe 4 Oil on canvas over panel 24 x 24 inches 2016

Maximum Value 2014-2016

A three year investigation of solar flares, black holes and the melting polar caps, very different yet similarly cataclysmic events.

After studying online satellite images of solar flares, coronal mass ejections, and reading about the resulting geomagnetic storms that could bring about the appearance of the auroras, I began this project with six CME studies. These studies evolved into a grid of one hundred one-foot square paintings that, through color transition, depict the journey of a CME from the sun to the earth. The grid begins with the fiery imagery of a solar flare and ends in the coolness of the auroras.

A related body of work titled Looking Closely at Things I Haven't Seen, shares the palette and imagery of the grid through the trope of the Four Seasons.

Looking Closely at Things I Haven't Seen 2014-2015

Working from the imagery and color palette of my Maximum Value project, I explore the theme of the four seasons.

Solar Flares, Black Holes, Nebulas 2013-2016

2013 - 2016
A series of paintings interpreting NASA sattelite images of solar flares, coronal mass ejections, auroras, black holes, and nebulas.

  • Black Hole 2

    #oilpainting,#auroras,#solarflares,#blackholes,#icefloes
    Black Hole 2 2016 Oil on canvas over panel 24 x 24 inches
  • BlackHole 5

    #oilpainting,#auroras,#solarflares,#blackholes,#icefloes
    Black Hole 5 2016 Oil on canvas over panel 24 x 24 inches
  • Nebula 2

    #abstractpainting#oil#nasa
    Nebula 2 Oil on canvas over panel 12 x 12 inches 2016
  • Nebula 3

    #abstractpainting#oil#nasa
    Nebula 3 Oil on canvas over panel 12 x 12 inches 2016
  • CME Study 1

    #oilpainting,#auroras,#solarflares,#blackholes,#icefloes
    2013 oil on canvas over panel 18 x 18
  • CME Study 2

    #oilpainting,#auroras,#solarflares,#blackholes,#icefloes
    2013 oil on canvas over panel 18 x 18
  • CME Study 3

    #oilpainting,#auroras,#solarflares,#blackholes,#icefloes#oilpainting;#auroras#solarflares
    2013 oil on canvas over panel 18 x 18
  • CME Study 4

    #oilpainting,#auroras,#solarflares,#blackholes,#icefloes
    2013 oil on canvas over panel 18 x 18
  • CME Study 5

    #oilpainting,#auroras,#solarflares,#blackholes,#icefloes
    2013 oil on canvas over panel 18 x 18
  • CME Study 6

    #oilpainting,#auroras,#solarflares,#blackholes,#icefloes
    2013 oil on canvas over panel 18 x 18

Neither Here Nor There 2013

In January of 2009 I drove across the country from Baltimore to Portland Oregon. When I wasn’t behind the wheel, I was documenting the landscape in hundreds of photos. These images played in my head for almost four years. Specifically, the dramatic landscape of the Southwestern leg of our travels, and the interesting juxtaposition of man-made interruptions to these amazing big sky vistas.

Inspired by the color studies of Josef Albers, these paintings explore the color relationships and palette of those American Southwest landscapes.

The floating square was used as a repeating element throughout the series. It contrasts the natural versus the man-made while creating a visual tension between illusionistic space and the two-dimensional picture plane.

  • YBR, NM

    #oilpainting,#landscape,#abstraction,#southwest
    2013 oil on canvas over panel 36 x 72
  • eight days in a prius

    #oilpainting,#landscape,#abstraction,#southwest
    2013 oil on canvas over panel 36 x 72
  • YRB, NM

    #oilpainting,#landscape,#abstraction,#southwest
    2013 oil on canvas over panel 36 x 72
  • the open door, NM

    #oilpainting,#landscape,#abstraction,#southwest
    2013 oil on canvas over panel 36 x 72
  • BRY, AZ

    #oilpainting,#landscape,#abstraction,#southwest
    2013 oil on canvas over panel 36 x 72
  • RYB, NM

    #oilpainting,#landscape,#abstraction,#southwest
    2013 oil on canvas over panel 36 x 72
  • Yellow 1

    #abstractpainting#oil#contemporaryart
    Yellow 1 Oil on canvas over panel 24 x 24 inches 2013
  • Blue 2

    #abstractpainting#oil#contemporaryart
    Blue 2 Oil on canvas over panel 24 x 24 inches 2013
  • Blue 1

    #abstractpainting#oil#contemporaryart
    Blue 1 Oil on canvas over panel 24 x 24 inches 2013
  • Red 1

    #abstractpainting#oil#contemporaryart
    Red 1 Oil on canvas over panel 24 x 24 inches 2013

Post-Arcadia 2013

Post-Arcadia is an exploration of a world that is rapidly becoming both paler and darker. Arcadia, as depicted by Renaissance painters, is a beacon of unspoiled wilderness. Post-Arcadia is a vision of our present environment through a lens of homage and memory. These dystopian landscapes were inspired by a very lucid dream. The bands of color in each piece recall a more abundant life.

Grey Paintings 2006 - ongoing

The Grey Series is a suite of fourteen oil paintings begun in 2006 as an exercise in limiting my color palette. The first eight paintings are complete. Grey 1 was inspired by Japanese brush painting and the gift of an orchid. Each painting informs the next in the series, in homage to Barnett Newman's Stations of the Cross.

  • Grey 1-4 studio

    #abstractpainting#oil
    Grey 1-4 (studio) oil on canvas over panel 2006-2009
  • Grey 1

    #oilpanting,#orchids,#japanesebrushpainting,#abstract
    2006 oil on canvas over panel 48 x 36
  • Grey 2

    #oilpanting,#orchids,#japanesebrushpainting,#abstract
    2007 oil on canvas over panel 48 x 36
  • Grey 3

    #oilpanting,#orchids,#japanesebrushpainting,#abstract
    2008 oil on canvas over panel 48x36
  • Grey 4

    #oilpanting,#orchids,#japanesebrushpainting,#abstract
    2009 oil on canvas over panel 48x36
  • Grey 5

    #oilpanting,#orchids,#japanesebrushpainting,#abstract
    2010 oil on canvas over panel 48 x 36
  • Grey 6

    #oilpanting,#orchids,#japanesebrushpainting,#abstract
    2010 oil on canvas over panel 48 x 36
  • Grey 7

    #oilpanting,#orchids,#japanesebrushpainting,#abstract
    2014 oil on canvas over panel 48 x 36
  • Grey 8

    #abstractpainting#oil#contemporaryart
    Grey 8 Oil on canvas over panel 48 x 36 inches 2015
  • Grey 1- 6 Installation

    #oilpanting,#orchids,#japanesebrushpainting,#abstract
    2006-2010 oil on canvas over panel 36 x 48 (each)

Into the Woods 2008

These landscape inspired paintings were the result of a surprise encounter with an urban bamboo forest and the patterns of birch trees

Marco 2007

The Marco paintings are the second in a series of paintings interpreting photographs (in this case Polaroid) taken while visiting Marco Island in 2007.

Connect with Kate

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Kate's Curated Collection

This artist has not yet created a curated collection.