Homegrown: 2011 Holiday Arts Tour

Now that the tour is right around the corner Homegrown will be a daily post highlighting our Holiday Arts Tour artists. NCLAC would like to celebrate the artists living in our own backyard whether they were raised here, relocated, or just like to visit enough to call Ruston home. This years Holiday Arts Tour will be November 18, 19, & 20th. Watch here for more information and tour locations.

Todays post is Whitney Anderson Caskey a Ruston resident originally from Quitman.

ABOUT WHITNEY

Whitney Caskey creates artwork that is based on storytelling. Her fascination with stories led her to drawing at a young age, which in turn, led her to painting. Her work now mainly deals with photography. Whichever medium is used, the works always retain a sense of a narrative. Often surrealistic, the artworks seem to be a frozen scene of a larger story. The viewer is then allowed to decipher this scene, placing their own ideas and experiences onto the works.

Caskey was born in 1989 inQuitman,Louisiana. In 2007 she began attending classes at Louisiana Tech UniversityinRuston,Louisiana. It was during this time period that her work moved from strictly drawing to large-scale paintings and photography.

She graduated from Louisiana Tech Universityin May of 2011 with a B.F.A. in studio art, and is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography.

ARTIST STATEMENT

At a young age, having a very introverted personality, I was always drawn to stories and reading as opposed to actually communicating with the outside world. It was a way of going infinite places while being confined to a very small town. The love of stories went hand in hand with a fascination with drawing. Creating scenes that told a story or held a memory was a very appealing idea, and was rewarding when it was successfully done.

Since then, not much has changed. What began as drawings evolved into paintings, and is now leaning towards more photographic imagery. I feel that photography allows for more experimentation, especially when combined with the more traditional arts.

My work retains the essence of storybooks, revolving around a narrative that the viewer is then able to decipher themselves. The viewer is not forced into one specific story, but allowed to project their own ideas and experiences onto the artworks. They often include portraiture. I tend to place myself in these scenes created, much like a reader places themselves in any story they read.

THE INTERVIEW

NCLAC: What, if anything, do you hope others get from your art? 

CASKEY:  What I want to do with my work is stimulate the imagination of the viewer. I try to draw from my past experiences, but be vague enough to where it can also relate to the viewer as well. I strive for my artwork to be a frozen scene from a larger story that then allows the viewer to fill in the blanks with their imagination.

NCLAC: What is the greatest compliment anyone has ever paid to you? What about the greatest insult?  

CASKEY: The greatest compliments and the greatest insults are actually pretty similar. One can pay a great compliment by saying “That’s an amazing photograph you have there,” and then turn it into an insult by saying, “You must have one awesome camera.”

NCLAC: As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

CASKEY: To be honest, I never really wanted to be an artist. At one point, I wanted to work in a crayon factory. (Thanks to Mr. Rodgers Neighborhood.) Then I switched from that to a power ranger, bug scientist, veterinarian, musician, and a zookeeper. What’s funny is that not much has changed.

Department of Culture, Recreation & Tourism, in cooperation with the Louisiana State Arts Council, Funding has also been provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, a Federal agency.  In addition funding for the Holiday Arts Tour is supported by a grant from the Louisiana Division of the Arts, Office of Cultural Development, Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism in cooperation with the Louisiana State Arts Council and administered by the Shreveport Regional Arts Council.

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