Kate Oh Gallery is delighted to present Edge In, a solo exhibition of new paintings by Caitlin Berndt. This series of small gouache paintings and larger oil paintings incorporates spray paint, acrylic airbrush, and sand. Like waking dreams, it takes your eyes a minute to adjust and decode what you’re looking at. Couples, little girls, spiky cacti, and Venus flytrap structures flicker in and out of focus revealing themselves in psychedelic-colored worlds. These dreamlands are playful, sexual, and strange.
The title refers to pushing oneself into an uncomfortable or precarious space where truth and fiction commingle. Caitlin’s work stems from personal narrative. In the past, she has drawn source material from fragments of pop culture, personal photographs, and memory. For this new body of work, she created maquettes that she illuminated with digital projection. One of these physical sources was a sculpture of her and her partner camping. Charting a recent transition from marriage cynic to newlywed, the content of her work shifted from selfhood to the intimacy of partnership, selfhood-within-partnership, and the living myths woven between the two.
While Berndt’s technique is evocative of her experience painting from life, studying color from Italian frescos, and copying master works, her paintings break free of categorization. Utilizing her intuitive sense of color to explore the nuances of intimacy, she has created textural, atmospheric compositions that are steeped in emotion and subversion.