Kara Brooks
Photography & Media

Kara Brooks (American, b. 2000) is a visual artist working with photography as a medium in order to create digitally manipulated settings that reflect scenes of her own scattered psychological states. She is fairly process oriented as she views her work making as a kind of visual journal in order to present internal perceptions to the viewer and herself. Using the process of traditional collage, Brooks takes objects from their original context and places them into a new, abstracted setting that becomes ultimately serene. The main drive of her work circulates around ideas of saturated color and how they communicate with each other and the viewer. Another important aspect of her work is the viewer’s perception of the installation. Brooks’s main goal when installing work is to create an interactive environment in which the viewer is able to absorb the playful, chaotic domain in which the work lives.

Brooks will be graduating from The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in the Spring of 2022. Her work Invasion of Intellect will be displayed at the BFA Senior Thesis Show 2022 in the Fine Arts Center on campus from March 28th to April 9th.

Self Portraits, 2021

Artist Statement:

Through the use of heavily saturated color and digital manipulation, I collage objects together in the same setting in order to create fantastical, psychedelic scenes as a way to present unexplainable emotions. I can only imagine that if I experience such emotions rather often, then others do as well. The arrangements that are made then form presentations of mental and emotional states of the developer. Using various objects like those found in thrift stores, cut outs of magazines, or objects found in my home, I am able to construct controlled, chaotic scenes. I am interested in passing on ideas of a scattered state of mind, while simultaneously balancing a sort of visual pleasure and purpose.

Using the process of traditional collage, I create new scenes by taking objects out of their original context and inserting them into a new one. This is important for my practice in the way that there is an automatic shift in perspective as objects are placed into various different environments. Duplicating objects in this manner has a similar effect due to the fact that more attention will be paid to a subject that is taking up more space within the frame. This technique is distinctly necessary for my craft because it gives me space to produce visual mayhem that is representative of the mind.

My most recent work, Invasion of Intellect, uses stated techniques. I put myself in control of my work by evaluating the status of my emotional and mental states prior to creation. The installation itself takes on a role of invading physical objects as a projection of emotions in order to best present purposeful pleasure to the viewer without a crystal clear explanation. The singular images that make up the takeover of the objects rarely contain transparency when contemplating the motives behind them. The indisputable use of color creates another level of chaos as they are heavily saturated and therefore seem to be incompatible; this incompatibility is so overbearing that they eventually come together in conversation with each other. In order to create an approval of uncertainty, the images have been obscured even more through physically cutting them into pieces in order to take them out of original contexts for the sake of shifting perspectives once again.