by Ariadna Zierold
Brooklyn-based artist Kelly Denato works in a variety of industries and mediums. She works professionally in animation, illustration, and design. Denato also regularly exhibits her paintings, drawings, sculptures, and soft sculptures in galleries across the US. What inspires Denato is the beauty of optimism, and its inherent tragedy, just before disappointment. Her paintings, which are marked by darkness as well as gleeful exuberance, are emotional expressions of this elusive pursuit for meaning and the simultaneity of ill-fated happiness.
Denato’s painting technique is characterized by meticulous and tiny strokes layered on a textured background. Her colors are glistening and candy-like, often lifting her characters out of darkness as if they have been carved by lacerating colors. Her genius is her ability to richly layer paint while still employing economy in the use of her line, maintaining an empathetic sense of gesture. Her characters are often floating and tangled, drawn with a masterfully delicate illustrator’s hand and an eye for the whimsically sardonic.