Karen Miranda Augustine




ritualistic pop artist
  writer + videomaker

 

inspiration


Here are some of the key things that deeply influence my creative work. I also keep a Tumblr blog: What inspires a ritualistic pop artist? where I post other sources of inspiration.

klarwein brazilian angel

 

Abdul Mati Klarwein

VISIONARY ARTIST

 

For me, he's the answer to, "Which non-living artist would you want to have dinner with?" His work is so spiritually rich, lush, and ahead of his time, as were his politics. Plus, he had a bit of an attitude, in a Serge Gainsbourg / Nina Simone type of way that I always find amusing. Some love Frida. I swear by Mati. Brazilian Angel is one of my favourite pieces.

 

Alice Miller

Alice Miller, Psychologist

CHILD ABUSE & MISTREATMENT

 

Known for her seminal work, The Drama of the Gifted Child, Alice Miller is a dedicated researcher on the topic of childhood trauma and its impact on the adult's life. Her ideas impact the way I position and empathize with the main figures in my work.

 

Divisé by Antoni Tàpies

 

Antoni Tàpies

ABSTRACT EXPRESSIONIST ARTIST

 

I love this Catalan artist. Tàpies was just dirty and organic with his materials, tactile and raw with the look of his paintings, and had an almost meditative way in which he used space in his works. Divisé is by the artist.

 

New Guinea

 

Ceremonial Art

WORLDWIDE: MASKS, SCULPTURES, TEXTILES, ADORNMENT

 

I love the performative nature of ceremonial art — from body painting, tattoos, sculpture, altars and votive paintings — because it all speaks to the senses and places ritualism into an everyday context. The Rand African Art site, for example, has a great worldwide collection of sacred sculptural works.


Deliverance by Erin Finley

 

Erin Finley

A MOST KICK-ASS CANADIAN FEMALE ARTIST

 

I love Erin Finley's work so much it's ridiculous. If I weren't such a lazy groupie, I'd probably be stalking her studio bearing home cooked meals, bottles of Olmeca and quarters to do her laundry. Regardless. She draws dirty, strongly, sexy — very punk rock with a pornographic touch. And I seriously dig....

 

Evelyn Alcide

 

Haitian Drapo Vodou

PRAYER FLAGS

 

Intricately made with sequins and beads to invoke the power of a diety, the sequins is used to represent that spark of light witnessed when one has directly connected with the spiritual realm. I use it frequently in my work, as well as related Vodun symbols, in keeping with spiritual beliefs of the Haitian culture. La Sirene is by Evelyn Alcide.

 

ifa

 

Ifá

TRADITIONAL YORUBA RELIGION

 

This rich, empowering, African spiritual tradition has over 400 dieties — patrons that speak to every aspect of our lives, from market women to warriors, from LGBT folk to the physically abused.

 

Jim Carroll

 

 

Jim Carroll

POET, MUSICIAN, PUNK, POSTHUMOUS NOVELIST

 

He was the first writer to have a deep impact on me as an emerging writer in my teens. Luckily, I saw him perform live twice. Only regret: not going to his book-signing when I was 17 at This Ain't on Queen East. I think he would have gotten a kick out of me: the school uniformed, Catholic high-school student who skipped class just to get her copy of Living at the Movies signed. His dense (and beautiful) use of words spurred me on to write.

 

Gravestone by Jean-Michel Basquiat

 

Jean-Michel Basquiat

NEO-EXPRESSIONIST PAINTER

 

It's unbelievably hard to be "free" in your work (brush-stroke speaking), and Basquiat had a really crazy free-form control in his style, which is very hard to achieve. His symbolism is also incredibly dense, his style so natively African. Being that prolific...well, it just goes without saying. Gravestone is by the artist.

 

Lana Sands

 

Sex Industry Workers

SEXUALLY STIGMATIZED WOMEN

 

Sex industry workers find their way into my work (e.g., Jada Fire, Divine Brown, Jordan McKnight, and Amy Fisher). Since the '80s, I have been drawn to these women for many reasons: their iconic beauty, salaciousness, stigma, work stories, cult status, obscurity, disproportionate number of deaths.... | PinkCross

 

anubis

 

 

Psychopomps

GUIDES TO THE AFTERLIFE

 

The spirits and ancestors make themselves present to us through our dreams, synchronicity and, in death, accompany us on the journey (crossing over) back home. I often make reference to these guides through vèvès and other symbolism.

 

Arrangement of Underworld Spirits by Norval Morrisseau

 

Woodlands Art

CONTEMPORARY INDIGENOUS CANADIAN PAINTERS OF THE WOODLANDS SCHOOL

 

Quite simply, the works have a gorgeous and sophisticated way of expressing the interconnection between the sacred and the profane. Arrangement of Underworld Spirits is by Norval Morrisseau.

 

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