Over the past few years, Katie Commodore’s artwork has concentrated on creating intimate portraits of her friends, often focusing on how they express their sexuality. Not whether they prefer men or women, but sexuality in the broader sense- what is it that makes them feel sexy, how do they express that physically, and how has it changed over the years?
We change our clothes every season, our physical appearance through body modification, losing weight, gaining weight, tattoos, etc; we change our kinks and sexual preferences partner to partner, year to year. Our sexuality, and how we feel about it, is in constant flux; the same way that we redecorate our homes, change the wallpaper and curtains, change the sheets.
Commodore likens this subtle change in how her friends express themselves to the way society also expresses its collective self through decorative patterns. In a roundabout way, it can be looked at as a meter of a population’s “sexuality”- the public expression of the private. Bright colours, vibrant patterns, clean lines, and minimal decoration all provide a window into the personalities that chose or created them. Historians and anthropologists often use the decorative remnants (pots, jewellery, frescos, etc.) of past cultures to gain valuable insight into the lives of the people that created them, the same sort of cultural portrait can be drawn from our design choices today.
Katie Commodore has exhibited all over the United States, and Europe, including England, Italy, Germany and Greece. She has her undergraduate degree from Maryland Institute, College of Art and her Masters of Fine Art degree from Rhode Island School of Design. Currently she lives in Brooklyn, NY.