Kayla Bischoff (kaylabischoff.com) is one of the hardest working young artists in Louisville. Unless an artist is lucky to get a full-time art job (as plentiful as unicorn sightings), they have to piece together their livelihood. But she is a visual artist foremost, one who already has representation (quite an achievement for a young artist) at Galerie Hertz.
LEO: What type of artist are you?
Kayla Bischoff: I identify as being a painter, though I sometimes utilize mixed media and drawing within my painting practice. I describe my work as semi-abstract or figurative abstraction.
What is your earliest childhood memory that involved art?
While on a camping trip with my family, I remember setting up an outdoor studio on a nearby picnic table. I spread out over the whole table with my sketchpads and drawing materials. I was never a fan of coloring books, because there was little to no room for imagination. I preferred a blank sheet of paper any day.
Who are some of the artists you admire?
Locally, I admire Bob Lockhart and Billy Hertz. Both have a fantastic eye for color and composition. I was lucky enough to take classes with Bob my freshman year at Bellarmine [University], and I have admired his irreverent humor and excellent craftsmanship ever since. I admire Billy’s ability to remain subtly representational in his abstract paintings. I also admire his love and passion for the medium of painting.
Historically speaking, I’m drawn to work of Elizabeth Murray, Keith Haring and Jean Dubuffet. Of these, Elizabeth Murray is definitely my favorite. I’m inspired by the whimsy and energy of her work, and I admire her perseverance. She remained true to her own artistic vision, ignoring the current trends when painting fell out of fashion.
You are also wearing another hat as the manager of the Kaviar Gallery. How do you go about finding artists and curating exhibitions?
To find artists for our exhibition opportunities, I utilize the many tools of the internet. Social media is incredibly helpful, and there are many websites available for posting exhibition opportunities. Posting artist calls to the weekly Louisville Visual Art newsletter of artist opportunities is especially helpful in finding interested local artists.
In addition to my role at Kaviar Gallery, I am the director of communications for LOOK, a nonprofit collective of Louisville-area galleries and museums. I am also a contributing art writer for Galerie Hertz, where I am represented as an artist.
What do you plan to do next?
I plan to continue pushing my work and exploring new possibilities. I typically begin a painting by allowing only intuition to guide me, making decisions based on each new layer. I never predetermine titles until after the work is complete. I’m excited to try out an exercise where I switch up the order of operations by coming up with a title first and using the title as a driving force for the painting.