I am a London-based artist, curator and a founding director of independent artist collective LOOSEgroup artists, who stage open-access exhibitions throughout the capital.

In my personal practice, I am primarily a sculptor first and foremost – using stone, ceramics, found objects – although my portfolio spans many different genres including painting, installation and relief.

I studied formally at Ravensbourne College of Design and Communication and the University of Northampton and I’ve also developed my professional training with courses in stone carving, illustration and continuing studio practice at the WMC.

My practice

Over and above all else, my work is intended to question and form a narrative around human emotional or social constructs –– whether that be physical, or something entirely imagined.

The Grid series (2012- present) is a visual ‘poem’ to our built and natural environment – and in particular, our often troubled, relationship with both sides.

The pieces are almost abstract expressionist paintings of cities – which touch upon the fundamental ideas of modernist architecture and urban planning and the sterility of ordered spaces we construct, from great city squares to concrete front gardens.

Not intended as a criticism necessary, i abstract built forms and man-made structures to understand what it is about human nature that seeks order in our environment – and in effect, assert control over what is essentially uncontrollable. And, in the order we create, do we not also invite a new chaos of human making in the debris we leave behind? Posters, stains, litter, cracked paving, food debris, graffiti – all signs of life that roguishly animate even the most sterile of man-made spaces. By paving and concreting, ordering and controlling, do we hope to sanitise our experience of life? Should we? Is it a losing battle? is there a solution?

The Lost Romantics series (2014) uses pre-raphaelite imagery to explore the loss of symbolic romanticism in the 21st Century and the representation of real emotion through unreal imagery.

Modern trail-blazers at the time, the pre-raphaelites used overly romanticised landscapes and figures and mythology – the unreal, to represent real human emotion and mortality. This concept so intrigues me that my paintings explore just how far these very real concerns can be stretched- by adding untruths to the original mythology and romanticism, pagan/popular symbols, long extinct and possibly inaccurate representations of ancient living creatures. At what point does something real become fiction and in the modern digital world, how can we tell?

For collectors

My portfolio houses a very brief overview of my work to date- although this is very much a work in progress which I will continue to build upon.

Some of what appears on the site is for sale and you can purchase it from me directly, alternatively I can also accept commissions. Please contact me if you would like to order one. I can work to any size or scale depending on my workload.

Outside art

Outside of my art practice, I have worked as a production designer for both film and theatre for new writing companies including joinedupwriters, Reduced Circumstances and Brain Hownd, amongst others. My sets have been seen on the London Theatre Fringe (The Old Red Lion, The Finborough Theatre, Hen & Chickens) and international film festivals.

I also worked professionally  for many years within architecture, design and communications – which has inevitably had a tangible influence on my work, in form, language and practice. And I also occasionally write reviews and feature pieces for both LOOSEgroup artists and Deadbird amongst others.

Kat Hayes