Visual Artist Spotlight: Kara Yancey

September 30, 2016

From complex concepts of meaning and emotional reactions, to something as simple as the colors used, the importance of art is in the eye of the beholder. So we at A.R.T.S.Y decided to give a shout out – or spotlight – to the visual artist whose work resonates with us in different ways, New York-based artist Kara Yancey, also known as YngKara.

1. About self

I’m Kara, newly 23 years old. My family is Trini, by way of New York. My parents traveled around the world with the air force and landed in Ohio where they had me. I was raised in Ohio where we’d run to New York whenever we got the chance. I don’t believe in boredom as long as you’ve got a mind, boredom is just a veil. Me living and breathing is me creating. There is no dividing or denying life and art for me.

2. How long have you been doing art?

I’ve been doing art my whole life. I was so hyper and energized as a child but I could wake up early and mind my business and draw for hours. My earliest memories start at late 2/3 years old. My mother still has all my work still. I have to do art as long as I’m living.

3. What art style would you classify your work?

Well I’m definitely a “drawer”. Drawing encompasses all of the tools I use, calling myself a painter seems limiting. My style is like definitely surreal. I like to think of my work as clean with controlled messiness. It’s pretty impossible for someone not to see it and say something like “trippy”

4. Inspirations

I pull a lot of inspiration from tattoo art and Sumi-e (Japanese ink painting). I really admire cartoonist and street artists for their eyes for composition and color. But most of my inspiration comes from the balance of country and city that I grew up fighting with and emotional balance in general. My goal is to take what I feel and bring it to life above all instead of trying to recreate things we see all the time that may be short of some truths. There are new truths all the time we need to explore them and be inspired by them.


5. What do you try to convey with your art?

I see my art as a way to express the drama, anxiety, and necessary pain that we all have to go through to find peace. Peace has always been important to me to have and hold no matter what else is going on because I’ve struggled with anxiety and depression. I want my art to be a shocking sort of empathy for the viewer. While these scenes are moving through space, falling apart and coming together, through rain and tears and growth, I want people to identify with the security of owning your emotions and not being shamed by or for them in order to grow.

6. Artistic process

I’m inherently impulsive. My best work and the work that I can commit to the most often comes from a burst of energy and then I turn it to the paper. I enjoy working at night and I really don’t like having to socialize for a long time while I work, and I mean days. I’m in my bubble when I’m working and I can definitely be a little over protective of my space and my work while I’m creating. I’m pretty much always smoking, not cigs. I’m hyper by nature so try I find my time and space. I can’t eat a lot of bullshit or I just get lazy and out of tune, lots of water and lots of music if I forget to listen to music it becomes very hard for me to concentrate and feel.

By: Kwesi Mark (@elkwesi_)

Read more stories like this by purchasing Issue 17

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