Beyond the Bio is a series that takes you past the canvas and into the minds of the artists and curators who build the contemporary arts community.

Painter Kristi Standley will be featured at Art City Austin: Art Alliance Austin’s 3-day art fair from March 31st – April 2nd at the Palmer Events Center.

Artist: Kristi Standley from South Austin

Primary Medium: Paint

Why do you make art?

I make art because if I don’t I would just dry up and blow away in the wind. I know that’s a little melodramatic but seriously there have been periods in my life where art didn’t have a place where I felt a void and deeply depressed. It was when my oldest son passed that I realized I had to get up, roll up my sleeves and create. Life is just a moment on earth if you aren’t dirty you haven’t played enough.

What do you use to create your work?

I paint people in oil on birch wood. I have painted with acrylics, and found them to be so unyielding. I took an oil painting class about 8 years ago and have never looked back. Oil paints are so rich with color and have such a buttery smoothness to them that I have become a better painter, there is just more flexibility with oils. I paint on wood because I dislike the texture of canvas. The wood grain adds it’s own look of texture without the lumps and bumps. Also, both the oil and wood are natural elements. There’s something about that “from the earth” quality that appeals to me.

How long have you been an artist and how has your practice changed over time?

I have literally been creating since I was about 3. My mom has a drawing of a hippo I did at that age, it may be crude,however you can clearly see a hippo. Growing up I drew a lot then my grandmother, who was a tole painter, was sadly diagnosed with Macular Degeneration. No longer able to see well she gave me all her acrylic paints and brushes. I guess I’ve been painting a total of about 25 years, on and off. However, I have been seriously painting for about 2 years now, selling my work and marketing myself as best I know how. I’m just waiting to be discovered! HA!

What are you working on right now?

I am painting a series now that tells a story about limits, whether they are self imposed or made by others, whether they are global or personal. I’m playing with these ideas using women as my muses, sometimes more successful than others but I’m having fun and that’s all that matters. Right?

Keep up with Kristi on her website, Facebook and Instagram.

Beyond the Bio is curated by Art Alliance Austin, with the assistance of Scott Nyerges.