Born in 1956 Kati was raised in Perth, Western Australia. She received a degree in visual art at Edith Cowan University in 1998 followed by an Honours degree in printmaking at the Hobart School of Art (UTAS) in 2001. She lives mainly on the south coast of WA, and works from her home studio as a print maker, but also incorporates drawing, textile, installation and sculpture in her practice.
Her work is often driven by narrative, creating scenarios that are more or less ambiguous and which reference human/nature relationships. She is interested in the way our sense of self is created from the histories we have inherited (both family and cultural histories), and how our memories are in large part formed into narratives or partial narratives. Her work draws on both personal stories and larger narratives to create images that act as visual fables. In this way, her art is often a form of storytelling, drawing on stories, dreams and memories to create images that carry a sense of movement and continuity, suggestive of unfolding tales. There is often a playful element to this work, conjuring mysterious landscapes where strange things happen.
Her art has autobiographic elements, drawing on both personal stories and those of her migrant family. Born to parents who fled Hungary during the second world war and found a home in Australia, Kati grew up with the echoes of the ‘old world’ resonating through her homelife even in suburban Perth. In 2010 she traveled through Eastern Europe to trace her family homelands and this experience has been reflected in past installations and exhibitions, and in the ongoing development of new work.
More recently she has undertaken a series of works that underscore more environmental themes. Drawing on her encounters with birds and animals to create an interface between the human and the natural, these works reflect on our relationship with the ‘wild’.
Kati’s work has been exhibited nationally in both solo and group exhibitions and is held in public and private collections across Australia and overseas.
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Images courtesy of Kati Thamo