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About Kay Khan
My work is a mosaic of fragments, collected experiences, information, and images. This mosaic is both ideological and visual. I like to begin with an idea that I allow to develop unhindered to encompass anything from the serious to the absurd. No thought is isolated and the simplest can build upon itself. Layers of connected thoughts revealed in a succession of images link and multiply in evolving variations. In my recent work, for example, I sometimes begin with just a word, but already this word comes with many meanings and connotations. Then I make a connection, a thin bridge, between each word and its images, and other perhaps abstract and veiled yet related ideas. My artworks are often labyrinths of intricate wordplay. I want the words to be read as fleeting and visual impressions that interact with the other stitched images. The figures in my work in combination with the words form a running commentary.
In the Armor and Facade series, I wanted to “armor” modern society. These artworks are about how we protect ourselves and how we present ourselves. I began with simple ordinary ready-made garments that I deconstructed; armored with quilting, imagery, and text; and then rebuilt. Garments have their mundane yet necessary purpose to protect us from the elements. But they are obviously more than that in every society. They are our “decoration”; they express and reflect who we are as individuals and as a culture.