Artist Spotlight: Katherine Sandoz

This week we are putting local Savannah artist Katherine Sandoz into the spotlight. Her brand new series (overpass) is ready for debut and we have been looking forward to showing you these gems. All works are water-based media on panel and come in a variety of (nice and large) sizes. We love the tonal qualities found in her abstract landscapes, don’t you? Check out an interview we had with the artist herself:



Katherine Sandoz

Intrigued by the people and landscapes of Savannah and coastal Georgia, Katherine Sandoz paints daily in her studio in Vernonburg.  Her work is fueled by her romance with the act of painting and inspired by her surroundings and the rich history and tradition of the deep South.  By painting and drawing these subjects, she hopes to preserve, catalog and celebrate the terrain of daily life. Sandoz’ work has been featured in New American Paintings and hangs throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia. In addition to painting, illustrating and general “making”, she regularly contributes to The Oxford American magazine blog Big Chief Tablet as well as to Salted & Styled (one of our local favorites).


Artist Q&A


Where do you draw inspiration for your work?

There is nothing that doesn’t inspire. I believe it’s my job to find beauty in the daily or mundane. Even the breakfast-filled strainer in the kitchen sink informs my work. Many times throughout the day, I find something that strikes my fancy and then I do my best to file the look, color, feel, and eventually employ it. My phone with its camera serves as a reference library.

Do you listen to music while you work? What’s top on your studio playlist?

I do listen to music or to audio books, but lately I’ve been streaming TedTalks in the studio.  I’ve chosen the “most viewed” category and I’m not skipping any of them.

How did the (overpass) series begin?

I moved to Vernonburg in 2004.  Immediately, I began documenting the marsh, waterways and land between the Southside and Coffee Bluff.  The first of what I call the  (keystone) series arrived shortly after that.  The works have ranged from very detailed to quite abstracted. The (overpass), the fourth series of the same location, depicts some of the developments and stages of construction of the White Bluff Road to Whitfield Avenue overpass that should be complete in Fall 2013.  This is the first time that I have included man made structures – or an allusion to them – in my abstracted landscapes.

What makes (overpass) from robin road different than other pieces in the (overpass) collection?

A painting, whether you “get it” or not, can be analyzed by first describing what one sees physically on the substrate. Given that, I challenge myself with limitations and/or by electing some of the building blocks of design;  line, color, shape, value, texture, spatial considerations.  I think about my need to document and catalog (as a pastime) so I choose a specific area of a location as my subject.  I want to offer a range of experiences throughout a series so working with location, time, subject, formal aspects and divine happenstance can be engaging and challenging all at once.

Outside of painting, what is your biggest passion?

Drawing.  Or talking about art and design making.

What advice do you have for aspiring professional artists?

There are no bad ideas so your job is to make the concept, materials, execution and presentation as strong and as informed as possible.  There are many, many strategies and studio modes that will help you arrive in that position.  At the same time, you must find a voice that sounds exactly like yours, so talk a lot, often and in various manners.  “Unique” is the goal.   Even “talk” about nothing can be beautiful, topical and meaningful so exploration and sustained study is key.  Constant rethinking and reframing is required.


Be sure to visit Katherine’s websiteblog, and online boutique where you can pick up a few of her pieces of art!


Stay tuned tomorrow to see how we created two different interiors that showcase a piece from Katherine’s latest collection!

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