Washington, D.C., USA
Amanda Kates is an artist based in Washington DC. She makes her mixed media drawings and paintings in a tiny bedroom studio that she requisitioned from her two-year-old daughter. Amanda has exhibited her work throughout the United States, including several solo, and two-person exhibitions. She holds an MFA from SUNY Albany, and a BFA from Binghamton University.
I have only recently decided to call myself an artist again. “Artist” was a primary feature of my identity until I became a mother four years ago. Since then, I, like many mothers, have felt a loss of self in tandem with a lack of time and space. My recent body of work, the first artwork I’ve undertaken since 2016, is born out of the tension between the unrelenting urgency of mothering two small children, and the impossible-to-relent-to urgency of retaining my identity. These drawings were made in surreptitious fits-and-starts: the guiltily stolen moments of quiet and privacy between mothering duties. They are small works, made in an un-ideal studio (the tiny bedroom I requisitioned from my toddler), and in media whose language I have yet to master. They are images from moments overwhelmed with spongy, sentimental love, but made in a rush tinged with resentment: the constant, jarring contradictions of motherhood.