Feature: Korin FaughtJuxtapoz // Wednesday, 05 Dec 2007
Words by Jolene Torr. Photos by Korin Faught.
Los Angeles artist, Korin Faught, is intrigued yet repelled by her American heritage. "A portion of my paintings are inspired by Puritan, Amish and other Christian fundamentalists," she says. "My own family bloodline draws back to the Puritans, a truly superstitious and strict sect of Christian faith."
Her haunting paintings are both dramatic and subtle, melancholic and hopeful. They're these eerie, little dark-white worlds, kind of peculiar with layers and layers of storytelling. "[I] use a strong narrative," she says, "and focus on composition and color elements to help with mood and theme." What's so appealing about her work is the way her figures command your attention. They're alive, beautiful, contemplative. They live intensely. But there's also restraint. And that's what's really interesting: the subtlety.
The lovely Miss Faught
Intentionally ambiguous, Faught's paintings are open to interpretation. "It's difficult to predict how people will respond to my work," she tells me. "But I try to make images that are compelling and open-ended, full of mystery. Those are the images that resonate." Take "Leaving Together" where two pilgrim women are lying on their backs, hands touching, staring at the ceiling. They touch, trying. Stare, waiting. For what? It could be about the attempt to repress these two girls and the hope that they'll escape the colony. Or maybe they're just dazing, each in their separate silence, daydreaming about leaving the oppressive world behind. Of this particular piece, Faught simply says, "It's about innocence and self-sacrifice."
"To begin painting, I copy the drawing onto the panel."
"Block in darks. Shadows are painted first."
"Close to 70% finished."
Her figures come across so natural probably because she uses her friends as models. Putting together a photo shoot is a major part of her creative process. "I am my own wardrobe department, lighting technician, and photographer. [I'm] directing models, organizing props, make-up, hair." She gives her models a concept to work with, so what you see in her paintings is a collaboration in a way.
"Live painting with model, Christine, at my house."
Coming from a small town in Colorado, it took Faught a few years to adapt to the L.A. lifestyle. "But now I love it here," she says. "With so many creative people, the art scene is extraordinary."
Having attended the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, Faught remains an L.A. resident. "Exposure to the city's galleries, museums, and artists has bolstered my creativity." It's also helped her get involved and meet other artists, make a name for herself. In 2005 she first showed at Cannibal Flower for a group show. Since then, she's done group exhibits in L.A., New York, Toronto, San Francisco, and Seattle. Her first solo show will be March 22, 208 at the Corey Helford Gallery. I'm sure she'll deliver, with her sullen, thoughtful girls who have some alchemy and mystery up their sleeves.
Korin Faught's online portfolio is at www.korinfaught.com