Hotwire Coffee May Artist Amanda Kay Helmick


I paint to create backdrops – to create depth in the flat plane, and to challenge what art is. My undisciplined eyes rip, score, sew and drill into a canvas that is not sacred. The paintings are vessels – holding discarded and repurposed objects and transforming their existence to a life of beauty and admiration. They are a form of “junk art” that have become my “kin”. Hence, junkartkin.

Painting with acrylic becomes necessary because it dries fast – milk paint adds depth, color and texture. I drill holes in the frame to support the objects, haphazardly rip the canvas, and messily sew to seal it back up again. The addition of shiny, pointy objects, strange fabrics, wooden doodads and heavy metals become the frenzied finish.

I have become emboldened by canvas since I started painting 10 years ago when a childhood friend’s death unexpectedly set my creativity free. Timidly, I would dot the canvas with primary colors, or paint swirls of complementary colors. I renewed my love of still photography during this period as well. Photographing nature opened my eyes to structure and texture, things I imitate in my paintings. I have no formal training, but credit experimentation and observation as my artistic education.

Please feel free to contact me if you are interested in purchasing one of my pieces, or would like a commissioned piece.

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