Catherine Kernan is currently guest artist at the Scuola Internazionale di Venezia.
Underlying most of her work is the premise that human memory and relationships with the earth are dynamic, mutable, interactive, and move in ever evolving cycles of repetition and variation. Oppositional forces of control and serendipity, order and chaos, perception and obstruction, light and dark, pure and tonal, guide her choices.
She has abandoned the depiction of particular places, preferring to work in an abstract, improvisatory way, drawing on internalized experiences. Her printmaking process is one of controlled accident at the interface between printmaking and painting; using large-scale woodblocks in unorthodox ways as a transfer tool, building images layer by layer without predicting the outcome, but always keenly in tune with the medium. No longer a purist, interruption and interference with the “perfect transfer” are integral to the process.
Catherine Kernan was born in Cooperstown, New York and grew up in many parts of the world including Iran, Spain, and Korea. She attended Wellesley College, received a BFA degree from Cooper Union in New York City, and an MFA from the University of Wisconsin/Madison. Her primary studio is in Somerville, Massachusetts, where she is a founding partner of Mixit Print Studio, an open access professional studio.
In addition to teaching many workshops, she has held teaching appointments at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, among other institutions. From 2010 until 2017 Catherine was Director of Maud Morgan Arts, an art center in Cambridge, MA offering art classes, workshops, and community programs.
Ms. Kernan’s work is regularly exhibited in private galleries across the country, national & international juried exhibitions, and invitational shows. Many private, and corporate collections own her work, as well as public collections, including: Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts, Boston Public Library, Grunewald Collection, New York Public Library, Library of Congress, Detroit Institute of Art, Davison Art Center at Wesleyan University, and the Harvard Art Museums. She has been awarded residencies at the Scuola Internazionale de Grafika in Venice (2017), the Ballinglen Arts Foundation, Co. Mayo, Ireland (1992 thru 2016), the MacDowell Colony (1986) and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts (1989).