Kristina Knowski

Using watercolor on paper, I present the viewer with depictions of non-existent creatures interacting in a non-specific world. The environment of this realm is intentionally loose and ambiguous, challenging the viewer’s perception of reality by contrasting representation with abstraction. The large scale of my work deepens the level of solemnity and solitude. I utilize the horizons or verticals of my paper seams to further suggest a physical and conceptual separation of dualities regarding perceptions of existence.

My primary motif in this domain is the imaginary unicorn, which although rendered as a solid surface, is often ghosted behind drips of watercolor. Historically, I have always been fascinated by the origin of the unicorn and its symbolism in various cultures. Although not physically present, this enduring creature still resides in our reality. In my paintings, the unicorn interacts with other species whose nonexistence is a result of extinction. I enjoy using observation, anatomical references, and specimens to study these species with an acute attention to detail. It is in this interaction between distinct types of nonexistence where my narratives take place.

As an artist, I hope to bring a remembrance and sense of dignity to these extinct species. By creating an unreal world for these creatures to inhabit, I hope to provoke feelings of emptiness within the viewer. In this metaphysical realm, I urge the viewer to examine the nature of reality and touch on the ultimate fear of our own nonexistence.