Kristin Texeira is an oil painter originally from Massachusetts. From her studio in Brooklyn, Kristin creates abstract colourful paintings to capture, document and preserve memories. We chat with Kristin to find out more about her earliest memories of painting, the influence of colour in her work and what happens on a normal day at her studio.
Studio photographs by Julie Simon.
What are your earliest memories of painting?
I remember as a very young child a pair of feathery paintings above my mother’s couch. I would subconsciously study them – the way the colors and shapes interacted and overlapped, comparing and contrasting them. So, it all started with looking.
After that I can remember passing my hours filling coloring books – my strategy was to use as many colors from the crayon box as possible. I had little watercolor sets and my grandmother would let me paint on her walls and windowsills. I loved color from a young age. I would take the paint palettes from my classmates and mix their colors together to watch them all blend before washing them.
Please take us through a normal day at your studio and tell us a little about your work process.
I’m a big list-maker. My day usually starts with a coffee and a “to-do” list. There is a lot to balance between the act of making art and the business side of things. So, my lists usually include a few business oriented tasks: emails, updates, applications, and then there’s the good stuff – what I will make that day.
Most of my paintings begin in the form of writing. I try to free write everyday in search of inspiration. Writing helps me to preserve the present and unlock memories that I haven’t visited in a while. My paintings are these stories retold through the language of color.
Colour is clearly an essential aspect of your paintings. Please tell us in which ways it influences your work.
My life is categorized with color. Colors are evoked through interactions. I make playlists based on the colors of songs. I know certain friends will get along with each other based on their colors. I see colors in scents and sounds. It helps me define moments in time.
I paint to provide proof – for myself and others – of existing in these moments. Painting keeps me present and allows me to pay homage to the past. I gather colors daily as a reminder to remain awake and I paint the colors of the past to remedy nostalgia.
What other elements are an essential part of your work? Where do you draw inspiration from?
Travel plays an important role in my work. I’ve noticed a pattern where I never have a sense of my present home until I reach a new destination. Interacting with new environments allows the past to become a memory and therefore something I wish to preserve through painting. Being in new places and listening to the stories of strangers serves as great source material for my pieces. My desire to learn through travel and my artistic practice are intertwined.
What are you working on at the moment?
Though I look outwardly for inspiration, my work over the past few years has been mostly personal. I am continuing the search for beautiful interactions but, I am starting to gather other people’s memories as well.
I have had strangers come to me with memories that they want to preserve through paint. There have been families that have to sell their grandparent’s home and want a tangible map to remember. There have been couples that share a great adventure in a faraway place, walking me step-by-step through their memory, asking me to put it into paint. It’s amazing some of the stories people have shared and beautiful that they trust me with something so precious. I’m hoping to continue my own adventure and help many people along the way with remembering theirs.