Artist’s Statement

I started making my current work because I wanted to create immersive color. I wanted to take the hues I love and blow them up to see as much uninterrupted color in one place as I could. To frame and enhance them in a way that wouldn’t complicate the view with more paint, I added embroidery. I loved that I was connecting back to myself as a crafter, getting to use my hands and work directly with materials.

The thread was meant to be there only in service of the paint color, but has expanded into something integral to these paintings. One new embroidery idea leads to another and I just want to keep trying them all.

When I’m making these pieces, it’s just about color and pattern. But when I look at them from the outside I see a special exchange happening that speaks to everything I love about art.

They are both painting on canvas and embroidery on fabric at once. One is fine art, one is craft, and as an artist you’re usually asked to pick a side.

Fine art is often intellectualized, going beyond its physical form. Craft and folk art are more down-to-earth, more part of daily life. I love both and can find meaning in both. I think anyone can. Art doesn’t have to be an elusive thing. It’s something we can all experience and understand.

The idea that art is for everyone has always been important to me. Choosing to work with unprimed, unstretched canvas is about making the art process more transparent and approachable. Artist’s canvas isn’t something beyond the everyday experience. It’s fabric. It frays, it wrinkles.

I consider myself a fine artist. I studied art history in New York and Florence, two cities that place huge value on high art. I grew up sewing and making jewelry and building cardboard dollhouses. I’ve realized that my work is equally informed by it all.

Los Angeles abstract artist Emily Keating Snyder

About Emily

I'm a New Yorker at heart (despite growing up in Maryland and now living in Los Angeles for years). That level of creative energy is tough to find anywhere else... and I love sarcasm. But L.A. is a sacred place when you’re obsessed with color. And living here has helped me to let go and be more myself in the art studio. It’s a safe city for experimentation.

I can’t remember a time in my life when I didn’t think of myself as an artist. I’ve always always been making things and getting my hands dirty. I’ve been in love with arts and crafts since I was a little kid and never liked the idea of separating the two as much as we’re taught to.

I’ve always been obsessed with homes and interior design. As a teenager my favorite road trips with friends were to IKEA. Today, ABC Home is as inspiring to me as MoMA and I’m so proud to make work that can be experienced by people in their own homes.

My happiest place is tinkering in the studio. The smell of paint. All the textures of different materials. The satisfaction of trying something new, even (especially) when it doesn’t work. My sketchbook takes the form of a million scraps of paper with more messy notes to myself than actual sketches. In life and in my work, I’m constantly seeking organization, simplicity and order then letting it all go in favor of curiosity and play.