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Kate Planting ’18 inspires a passion for art

Photo by Bridget O'Callahan
Photo by Bridget O’Callahan

This year, Kate Planting ’18 has won multiple awards for her artistic accomplishments, including an honorable mention from the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards for her four square digital art project that challenged the idea of what she deems a “perfect suburbia.” A four square digital art piece is four different squares within one big square, and each square can be a varied type of digital art medium. Planting explained that there are a lot of misconceptions about suburbs that she wanted to challenge using art.

“Suburbs are always pictured as these perfect places where nothing goes wrong, so I kind of wanted to show off the fact that there could be something wrong in a household in a suburb and people just wouldn’t think about it because the majority of people would assume that everything in a suburb is perfect”, Planting said.

She also won a prestigious gold key award for her drawing called Feminism. According to Planting,  while the original message was to protest school dances, and fancy dresses and shoes, it eventually developed into a piece with a feminist message. The piece features a girl lifting up her skirt, but also wearing converse shoes underneath. Near her feet, there are green army soldiers pulling are at the hem of her skirt, as if attempting to drag her down. Although there are several men and only one woman, the woman is bigger in comparison to the men, which is what Planting’s main message is. “One woman is equivalent to so many men, but it is viewed as the opposite in society…I wanted to flip the balances,” Planting said.

Though she was thrilled about winning the award, Planting said that she was just grateful someone recognized the meaning of her work.

“It was nice to be recognized for something I put a lot of energy and a lot of time and effort into, but I don’t create art for an award; I create art for myself. It’s like my release and a stress reliever.” she said.

Planting is also working on an architectural piece inspired by two haikus that she read in the New York Times. Both haikus focus on loneliness in a city, which is why Planting is constructing two cities, connected by a bridge to represent their similar themes.

The piece is part of a project she is doing for her Advanced Drawing and Painting with Visual Arts Instructor, Kathy Rea. Planting attributes her success in studio arts to her time spent in class.

“I think the classes at Marlborough, particularly Ms. Rea as a teacher, has helped me explore who I am as an artist: my ideas, my thoughts and how to progress and become better”, Planting said.

It goes without saying that Planting’s accomplishments in her artistic pursuits are a result of her deep affection for the arts. Planting explained that one of the reasons she loves art is because of the influential power it carries.

“I have the power to create something truly beautiful and so does everyone…you have the power to change the way someone sees something.” she said.