Film by Eric Minh Swenson. Music by El Monge


When you fall in love with an artist's creation, you expand your capacity to experience Beauty in the world.


Excerpts from an Article by Michael Douglas Carlin

They say good things come in small packages. Kate weighs in at 100 pounds but don’t let her size deceive you. She is a Giant – a force – intellectually, politically, and spiritually. She puts her passion and intensity into everything she does and I find myself exhausted after nearly five hours of conversation. She challenges me and pushes my thoughts into uncomfortable areas where I must stretch my mind.

When I think of who has their fingers on the pulse of what is happening, Kate is now at the top of my list. We talk about life, art, music, movies, Venice, and each time the conversation takes a philosophical turn. Her opinions are never simply repeated sound bytes. No… she really thinks and asks questions that make me think. The interaction is a tug of war toward a new understanding reflective of her art.

She takes me into her world of art where she once sat weeping upon seeing "John the Baptist” by Rodin. She talks about being forced by the best artists to dig deeper in her own work to create meaningful pieces as she is "always working to get out of the next layer of closed minded thinking.” She defines art as emergent, where the truth, beauty, and goodness of science and mysticism converge. She must pour more than her own soul into her art – she strives to place all of humanity there.

"Some of my portraits are more vulnerable than I had intended,” she says with a blush. Even she doesn’t understand all of the secrets at play in her art. "What is that thing that is in all of us? I try to incorporate it in everyone I paint.” A tender moment of reflection as she tells me about sensing the passing of her father – that shift of energy, and from her vulnerable words I come to understand her secret – she paints and draws as others do, but she also releases her energy into her art – the same phenomenon that brought her to tears staring at a statue. I now know why I wanted to understand her process, why I wanted to interview her. I decide to read about Rodin’s "John the Baptist” and I find what he (himself) said about the man he chose as a model. "As soon as I saw him, I was filled with admiration; this rough, hairy man expressed violence in his bearing… yet also the mystical character of his race. I immediately thought of a Saint John the Baptist, in other words, a man of nature, a visionary, a believer, a precursor who came to announce one greater than himself. The peasant undressed, climbed onto the revolving stand as if he had never posed before; he planted himself firmly on his feet, head up, torso straight, at the same time putting his weight on both legs, open like a compass. The movement was so right, so straightforward and so true that I cried: ‘But it’s a man walking!’ I immediately resolved to model what I had seen.”

When Kate tells me she wants to make a painting after Kundera’s Unbearable Lightness of Being, I can’t help hoping that some of her energy escapes onto that canvas. I can’t help thinking that every tear she sheds elevates humanity.