Beginning June 2022

Cat’s paintings combine Indonesian textile patterns, processes and tools used in batik painting (an Eastern painting process using a hot wax resist and pigment dyes on textiles) with Western encaustic painting techniques (a painting process invented by the Greeks using hot beeswax and pigment fused with a heat source). Layers of pigmented wax are applied to the surface, and then “branded” using the solid brass tools. The wax melts away, revealing the colors below. The viewer is introduced to a kind of visual excavation, as top layers are burned away to reveal what came before. Cat uses these elements to vividly represent and express human emotional and spiritual states, and to explore relationships between beauty and structure.

Cat Crotchett, Artist

Says Cat about her process:

The patterns, techniques, and materials I use challenge me to respond in the moment. I establish rules at each stage of the painting that I have to work within. Every decision I make abdicates some element of control of the work. This parallels the way we move through life as human beings, making the work a manifestation of the existential. With that said, I also just love to paint – each painting is a learning experience – fresh and new. I still believe that art can change the way we move through and see the world.

As an undergraduate at the University of Illinois, Cat studied Art History – then she took a painting class. The result was a double major and subsequent graduate work at Bowling Green State University in Ohio. She has been a professional artist for over 30 years. She lives and works in Kalamazoo, MI with her husband, son, border collie Lucky, and cat JoJo .Cat was presented with Western Michigan University’s Distinguished Faculty Scholar Award in 2021. In 2022, she was selected as a resident at the Golden Foundation for the Arts in New Berlin NY.

Click thumbnails to view full-sized images of the exhibition.

Deflect, 24″ x 24″
Lean, 36″ x 36″
Grace, 24″ x 24″
Displace, 36″ x 36″
Touch, 36″ x 36″
Tempest, 36″ x 36″
Big Red, 36″ x 48″