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Life & Work with Mariah Katherine

Today we’d like to introduce you to Mariah Katherine. 

Hi Mariah, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I’ve been a natural-born painter since the age of 10. I was heavily influenced by my art teacher Mrs. Brown whom taught African American art history in parallel to teaching arts and crafts to her students. Between her and watching PBS art specials of artist like Banksy, Pollock, and Basquiat I grew to love every art form. My Junior year of high school I told myself I’d pursue photography in college until my media teacher introduced me to graphic design. I studied studio art for 3years at Lincoln University, my family school. Then, I transferred to the University of Missouri-Kansas City. I completed my B.A. in Art with an emphasis in Graphic Design 2016. After graduation, I started doing art showings in galleries and on the crossroads. I also began teaching art through after-school programs to the youth. I offer my gift through services such as paint and sips, face painting, graphic design needs, and canvas painting commissions. Right now, I’m working on a book and private collection that resonates with my story. This is the planting of a beautiful creation. 

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
It has not been a smooth road. The bumps and bruises along the way are just as important as the wins. They teach us. Most challenges are knowing the difference between how people value you/your art versus what you’re actually worth. No one will know your growing pains. No one will know your drive because it’s you that carries the vision. Always be the best version of you and champion for yourself. Never give anyone the power to initiate a self-celebration. 

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
I specialize in Afro Art Studies. I love to look back at historical references to influence my creations of today. People know me to create hip-hop-centered illustrations, crystal paintings, and Afro-centered paintings. It’s bigger to me than just that. It’s science and mathematics for me. I’m most proud of my yearn to learn. It amazes me how colors, numbers, nature all intertwine to create humans and we use those forces to create art. It’s somewhat spiritual the connectedness. That’s what separates me from other artist, my awareness of the divine and love for “Black Rhetoric “as Sonia Sanchez would say in her poetry. She asked, “who’s going to make it mean something?”. 

If you had to, what characteristic of yours would you give the most credit to?
Great learner. I love to research and try different art forms. I don’t limit myself in the world of art. Mostly because I want to share what I learned. I’m light-hearted and feel that has made learning different aspects of art fun and made my encounters with people of the art world flow easily. I love to share anything about art and history with any creative I meet. In my artwork my qualities of linework and patterns are amazing. It’s something I try to make stand out in all my works of art. With color, just like in theater, I try to use colors to compliment the mood of the artwork. 

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