Julia Katz - Water series

In the Froth, oil on panel, 48"x 60"

About the Water Series:

In this series of paintings, Julia Katz continues her exploration of the body in movement, taking us outdoors, to the natural environment of a Pacific Ocean beach, and an urban fountain in Atlanta. Katz takes advantage of the opportunity to push her gestural use of the brushstroke further, creating a palpable sense of space and color with paint. These exuberant paintings feature junior lifeguards on the sand and in the water, and children playing in fountains. In the hands of a lesser artist, the subject matter might merely be considered playful, or sentimental - but Katz imbues the imagery with a sense of immediacy and energy, conveyed as much by HOW the paintings are made as by WHAT they are depicting. This perfect marriage of form and content is what ultimately makes the work so satisfying.

Says Katz of this series:

"While vacationing in Huntington Beach, California, I came across a training camp for junior lifeguards, aged 9 - 11. I was attracted to their enthusiasm and their yellow, red, and blue uniforms. I photographed them racing into and out of the water. This brigade of primary colors amused me and struck me as an army of innocents."

"The environment that I have created for the running children in these paintings is an indefinite and abstracted space. In my view, it is paradoxical in that the illusion of space has been simultaneously flattened and deepened. I was intrigued by my realization that the beach environment was alive and in motion, just as the children were. The air, sea, sand, and sky were teeming with life and movement and led me to think of the space as a participating character in the drama of the scene." "The Jr. Lifeguard paintings and the Fountain paintings have similar imagery. Both groupings depict children in outdoor settings playing in or near water. I chose this subject because of what these kids share in common: unselfconscious engagement in the natural movements of play. I was not specifically seeking children as subjects. I would be interested in anyone moving with enthusiasm and creativity. It happens to be easier to find children immersed in this kind of movement than adults. I was also interested in incorporating more ethnic diversity in my work, so I was happy to find that in the children playing together at the Fountain of Rings located in Centennial Olympic Park in Atlanta. I took all of these photos in the summer of 2007. I did not know at that time that I would be incorporating African-American children into my subject matter in the fall of 2008 just as our country reached the great milestone of electing an African-American president. I find that a bit of the celebration of that achievement is reflected for me in the innocent children of my Fountain paintings."

Julia Katz Biography

Up, 2009, oil on panel, 36"x 24"

Air, 2009, oil on panel, 36"x 24"SOLD

Beach Boy, 2009, oil on panel, 36"x 48"

Game Prep, 2009, oil on panel, 18"x 24"

Chase, 2009, oil on panel, 24"x 30"

Hop, 2009, oil on panel, 24"x 30"

Splash, 2009, oil on panel, 24"x 30"

Skip, 2009, oil on panel, 24"x 30"

Spray, 2009, oil on panel, 24"x 30"

View paintings from the PEOPLE WATCHING series by Julia Katz.

View paintings from the DANCE MARATHON series by Julia Katz.