Biography of Cathryn Hankla:
After studying photography, film, design, and drawing, Hankla came to her first love in the visual arts: painting. She collects contemporary paintings, especially those by women, and draws inspiration in her own work from post-impressionists and modernists, as well as minimalists, and pop/op artists from the 1950’s on.
Hankla is also the author of more than fifteen books of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction, including Not Xanadu, Lost Places: On Losing and Finding Home, Galaxies, and Great Bear. She is professor emerita, Hollins University, where she taught graduate and undergraduate creative writing and literature for most of her career, and various courses at the intersection of image/word. She currently teaches private students and a summer writing workshop at Nimrod Hall Creative Arts. She writes and paints in Roanoke, VA.
My paintings are experiments in pattern and color; they rely on combinations and re-combinations. I draw inspiration from patterns, music composition, the natural world, cloth swatches, and various symbolic systems, including sacred geometry. Although most of my work falls into the nonrepresentational category, occasionally I want to make something recognizable because I also enjoy drawing from life. Each painting represents a meditation of slow labor, an inner sanctum, involving repetitions with slight variations or a collision of shapes, textures, and colors. My paintings have been selected for national juried shows and private collections, as runner up for New American Paintings, and published in Studio Visit.