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  • Writer's picturePeggy Nichols

Kristine Schomaker, an artist whose work explores and challenges gender and body identity...

Updated: Mar 5, 2023

'Bride of Thy Self', oil on canvas, 24 x 24 inches.

Collaboration between Holly Boruck & Kristine Schomaker for

Perceive Me.

'Over the last 15 years the focus of my work has shifted from abstract painting and mixed media art to conceptual work based on body image. I recognized I had an eating disorder and body dysmorphia and I wanted to use art to change, challenge and heal. I continue to explore gender and body identity and societal privileging of women's physical beauty over character and intellect.

My work is personal, intense, emotional, violent and familiar. As a plus size woman with an eating disorder, I use performance and installation to de(con)struct the self as it is viewed through the lens of American consumer culture.

My performance and documentary work draws inspiration from Feminist artists whose biographical focus on identity informed their art. I frequently cite artists like Lynn Hershman Leeson, Hannah Wilke, and Eleanor Antin as touchstones.

I use children's toys, mannequins, family photos, my Second Life persona and conceptual social practice projects to investigate, document and challenge personal and universal values of self and society.

The process of documenting my life and being vulnerable and brave through performance is the art.'

'Plus, Hard Rock Hotel, Palm Springs, February 16, 2018 AP'

photography (selfie), variable.

left to right: 'Zoom Freeze Selfie, March, 29 2022', photography (selfie), variable.,

'Plus, Crown Plaza, Ventura - October, 7, 2017 #11', photography (selfie) variable., 'Zoom Freeze Selfie, May 26, 2022', photography (selfie), variable.

The Perceive Me Project

'Presence', ceramic, underglaze, acrylic, 21 x 21.5 x 18 inches.

Collaboration between Tanya Ragir & Kristine Schomaker for

'Perceive Me'.

'Lustful Daydreaming', acrylic on canvas, 24 x 24 inches.

Collaboration between Betsy Stein & Kristine Schomaker for

'Perceive Me., 'Call and Response', photography (selfie), variable.,

'Learning to Love My Face', photography 9selfie) variable.

'The Bald and the Beautiful - The Gracie Kendal Project',

multimedia digital hybrid, variable.

'Wondering Where You are Going to Turn', handmade paper and gloss medium, 48 inches round.

left to right: 'Mechanism of Change', cut up paintings on wood panel, 72 x 36 x 36 inches., 'I Carry Your Heart With Me', acrylic on cradled panel board, 94 x 48 inches., 'Through Thick and Thin', acrylic and paint pen on cradled panel board, 48 x 24 inches.

'Ode to Lost Love', cut up paintings and antique chair,

48 x 24 x 24 inches.

left to right: 'Losing Weight', shredded skinny photos, 26 x 18 x 18 inches., 'Comfort and Joy', acrylic paint, Yogurtland spoons, glass jars and metal table, 48 x 26 x 24 inches., 'King and Queen',

acrylic paint, plastic little girls beauty salon and kitchen toys, plastic comforter bag, 30 x 24 x 8 inches.

Kristine Schomaker, in her studio, during the Brewery Artwork.

Photo taken by L Aviva Diamond.

Kristine Schomaker (she/her) is an artist, art historian, curator, publisher and mentor living and working in Los Angeles, California. She earned her BA in Art History and MA in Studio Art from California State University at Northridge.

In 2014 Kristine founded Shoebox Arts aimed at helping artists gain a presence in the art world.

Kristine has started critique meet-ups, runs an alternative art space and is an art activator for the organization Artists Thrive. She is also the publisher of Art and Cake, a contemporary L.A. Art magazine and has curated numerous art exhibitions throughout Southern California.

She is currently the president of the California State University Northridge Arts Alumni Association. Her mission is to create community among artists and the art world in order to help each other thrive.

Exhibiting her work since the late 1990’s, Kristine has been featured in numerous exhibitions including most recently group shows at Bermudez Projects, another year in L.A., Golden West College, Coastline Art Gallery, Keystone Art Space, LAVA Projects, San Diego Art Institute, Launch LA, Surrogate Projects, 18th Street Art Center, Durden and Ray, Blue Roof Studios, Monte Vista Projects, PØST, Brainworks Gallery, BLAM and the Torrance Art Museum.

She has also had these solo exhibitions: "Perceive Me", a

traveling exhibition at California State University Los Angeles, Studio Channel Islands in Camarillo, Museum of Art and History in Lancaster and Coastline Art Gallery in Newport Beach, “Plus” at Ark Gallery in Altadena and Moorpark Community College, “Mirror, Mirror!” Gallery H Phantom Galleries LA, Hawthorne, California, “A Comfortable Skin,” Kerckhoff Hall Art Gallery University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California and “Ce n’est pas une peinture,” TRACTIONARTS, Los Angeles, California.

Curated Exhibition by Kristine Schomaker. Artist work on flyer: SERENA POTTER.

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