Artist In Focus: Krystal Hart

Call for Recess by Krystal Hart (2021)

Krystal Hart is a North Carolina native. She received her BFA with honors from the New York Institute of Technology and is a distinguished recipient of various artist honors and residencies. With her list of artistic accomplishments being pages long, it is clear that Krystal has made her mark in the creative world.

Krystal uses regional soils, inks, metals, pigments, and minerals intermingled with man-made materials or structural imagery to explore the human existence . The organic and inorganic materials and processes also hint at the glass and metal in her body. Getting to know people and their stories is as much a part of her process as being in the studio.

Hart employs principles from traditional Japanese painting methodology, audio, and digital technologies to create intimate communal spaces. These spaces hold meaning, value, community, and dignity. She explores the role of storytelling in peace and conflict narratives, human interactions, and environmental contexts in historical and generational perspectives and considerations.

In her current body of work, “Her Untold Story Project,” Hart invites everyday women to tell their stories on their own terms. This work is about resilience, memory, story, and legacy. Audio interviews are performed. Hart then paints from these narrations. The sound is then edited around similar and contrasting cross-dialogues with other recorded narratives. These dialogue bites are then used to inspire accompanying musical compositions.

After a series of smaller works, the next phase of this project is to create large ceiling-to-floor suspended works that are formidable but delicate in nature. These works will be accompanied by audio narratives and musical compositions undulating through the space. Hart would like to further explore how to play with audio placement and manipulate timing augmenting human interaction with the works.

“Allowing women to tell their stories in their own words can be empowering and liberating,” says Krystal when asked about the impact of this project. “Preserving these stories for present and future generations is like rescuing and holding on to the essence of our very existence.” Last summer, Krystal was invited to exhibit her works and soundscapes from “Her Untold Story” at Oxford University.

Outside of the art studio, Krystal offers coaching sessions. Krystal has consulted, mentored, and instructed for over a decade. The sessions range from intensive instructional sessions to full creative consultations. She works in both traditional and digital mediums in individual and collaborative settings. She remembers when she was unsure where to begin with her art, and her studio felt overwhelming. Through her coaching and 1:1 sessions, she hopes to help inspire other artists.

You can view her most recent exhibition at the GBA online.  Hart will be participating in Weatherspoon Art Museum’s Art on Paper 2023 exhibition this fall. Krystal is a 2021 Artist Support Grant recipient of ArtsGreensboro. Krystal is a current resident and tenant liaison at the Sternberger Artists Center.

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