Natovian McLeod is an artist and educator working in Baltimore, MD. She has her BFA in General Fine Arts with a Master of Arts in Teaching from Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA). She has been awarded Maryland Teacher of Promise 2016 and a certificate of merit from Arts Educator, Dr. Justin Sutters. At MICA she has worked intensively with faculty and its board members to restructure its core curriculum to focus on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Globalization. 

Artist Statement

My paintings represent stillness and the relationship between verticality and space. They stand as a symbol of my feelings about control, containment, and loneliness while stressing the necessity of contemplation. While I have been exploring the uncertainty of my relationships between myself and others, these structural paintings explore the certainty that I have found within my own set of values and opinions on the world. While this certainty is often times fulfilling, sometimes it leads to more questions. The verticality of these structures represent the figure, the colors either represent the light or fulfillment coming through darkness, or the questions that arise when finding out more about myself.

These structural paintings show the relationship between knowing oneself completely and knowing oneself with another. Once we know ourselves; what makes us irritated, or leaves us feeling content or at peace; and we are placed in the same space (life) as someone who also is self-aware, what does that relationship look like, and does the process of knowing ourselves require another look?  These colors change with each movement of the eye, being unsure if the color of the existing structure is a shadow or reflection. Having one edge slightly lighter than the one next to it, the perception of space is altered. As the eye attempts to focus the image, there is a vibration between the colors and its verticality. Some of my pieces require you to experience its changes in color by the movement of the body. From looking at one angle of the piece it appears to be fully one color, but looking from the other it appears to be a different color.

When one becomes self-aware, others still exist and the other person may be very sure of themselves as well. As the viewer, I invite you to reflect on the relationships in your own life while looking at the story I am telling about the relationships in mine.