Over the past few years, my artwork has concentrated on creating intimate portraits of my friends, often focusing on how they express their sexuality. Not whether they prefer men or women, but sexuality in the broader sense- what is it that makes them feel sexy, how do they express that physically, and how has it changed over the years?
We change our clothes every season, our physical appearance through body modification, loosing weight, gaining weight, tattoos, etc; we change our kinks and sexual preferences partner to partner, year to year. Our sexuality, and how we feel about it, is in constant flux; the same way that we redecorate our homes, change the wallpaper and curtains, change the sheets.
I try to liken this subtle change in how my friends express themselves to the way society also expresses its collective self through decorative patterns. In a round about way, it can be looked at as a meter of a population’s “sexuality”- the public expression of the private. Bright colors, vibrant patterns, clean lines, and minimal decoration all provide a window into the personalities that chose or created them. Historians and anthropologists often use the decorative remnants (pots, jewelry, frescos, etc.) of past cultures to gain valuable insight into the lives of the people that created them, the same sort of cultural portrait can be drawn from our design choices today.
It is very important to me that I not come across as judgmental about my subject matter or imagery, but that they stand on their own as portraits of real people, expressing themselves how they choose.
Katie’s parents could have told you when she was a toddler that she would grow up to be an artist, despite years of her insisting that she was going to be an astronaut and them sending her to Space Camp twice. Never giving up her dreams of painting Martian landscapes and testing low gravity pastels, she went to art school, which surprisingly lacked the rigorous science background NASA required, although she did buy a car once from someone who worked for NASA. However, what art school lacks in science and math they make up in spades when it comes to teaching art, which is what she was good at anyway. Commodore now resides in Providence, RI, with all the artists that ran away from Brooklyn but didn't head up to Hudson, where she spends her days painting incredibly detailed pattern-based erotic portraits of her exhibitionist friends and longing for the day when the space program starts an artist’s residency.