Artist StatementHaving been a child that always played outdoors, it seems only fitting that as an artist I most enjoy depicting the natural world. Specifically, I am most interested in the brilliant colors and organic shapes of botanicals. I prefer to depict a wild explosion of blossoms with no apparent source. I paint with large strokes as well as traditional and nontraditional materials -- including spray paint, pastel crayons and drippy paint (oil or acrylic) -- to convey my love for color and movement. While working on a canvas, I dance between painting with precision and painting with wild abandon, as I don’t want a commitment to a particular flower or image to compromise the sensations of wildness, color and wonder. I identify with the impressionist painters of the 20th century as well as modern abstract expressionists. Being a departure from pure representation, my work illustrates this influence. In my visual language, the flowers, colors and brushstrokes are symbolic of a mood, feeling or memory. I insist on painting things that move me or make me feel happy. I feel the best use of my voice in painting is to communicate something positive. Ultimately, I hope my paintings are energizing and uplifting for others as well.
Born in 1984 in Fairfax, Virginia, Jessica McKinney grew up just outside of Washington, D.C.. She began to exhibit photography at an early age and won numerous awards at the Prince William County Fair as a teenager. She graduated with an associate degree in fine arts summa cum laude at Sandhills Community College in Southern Pines, North Carolina, where she lived for several years as a young adult.
After moving back home to the D.C. area, Jessica studied briefly at the Corcoran College of Art & Design as well at Washington Studio School programs. She has worked professionally curating and managing retail art galleries while continuing to exhibit her own work. Recent honors include acceptance into juried group exhibitions at the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art and the headquarters of the Historical Society of Washington, D.C.
Jessica is now living and working in her studio in Baltimore, Maryland.