AXOM Gallery is pleased to announce our new exhibition, “BLACK5 WHIT35 COLOR3D5”, a multi-disciplinary body of work by artist, Kurt Ketchum.
Kurt Ketchum has worked as a graphic designer all of his adult life, and from that experience of layout and design, he slowly built his artistic style.
Kurt credits his uncle, Ron Ketchum, an artist and a successful entrepreneurial pioneer with introducing Kurt to his commercial art studio as a child. He attributes that to the awakening of his own DNA as an artist and interest in pursuing graphic design. Kurt studied industrial arts, jewelry, architectural drawing and printing at East High school in Rochester. After graduation he studied Graphic Arts for a year with his uncle, and entered the field and then began his career in Graphic design. I am lucky to have been in close proximity to some very fine human beings,” he says. “I have learned through paying attention.”
He adds, “In my case. When the teacher is ready, the student appears! I actually uncovered some inspirational books in the RIT library that were critical to my fusing of my “Art” with my “Design”. Apparently they have always been linked but for a period I was bent on keeping them separate. However I have resolved this to a greater degree now.
One can see immediately how Ketchum’s core sense of design in his artwork is related to his work as a Graphic artist. What is not so evident is that which he is expressing, as he mixes numerical symbols with alphabetical and geometric ones, compelling the viewer to examine closely the multiple layers of textures and shapes, all interacting in a field of interchangeable negative and positive spaces, in search of meaning – a reflection perhaps, of Ketchum’s own life journey.
Kurt Ketchum’s inspirations seem to come from his moment to moment encounters with his visual world. In a small snapshot, his work aspires to represent the strife to achieve “a level of order amidst the constant movement of life” as he puts it. “As humans we have an opportunity to collectively and personally shape life by our choices. Seeing things differently, or seeing things that are often overlooked, is where my head goes.”
He goes on to explain how those choices can sometimes take us off course, but that “these deviations can often bring the most creative opportunities. In that regard, Ketchum is an optimist.