Kyle Staver: Interview

Kyle Staver, Jonah and the Whale, 2014, oil on canvas, 68 x 52 inches (courtesy
Kyle Staver, Jonah and the Whale, 2014, oil on canvas, 68 x 52 inches (courtesy of the artist)

Larry Groff interviews painter Kyle Staver about her work and career.

Staver comments: "Composition is the delivery system, there are lots of different aspects of how the painting delivers its message. You need to have the horse firmly in hand or else you can’t do it. Composition helps me contain it and release the message in the way I want it... I think of the canvas as an arena… I set up my rules, something going to happen and the painting must resolve, I don’t leave them hanging. Everything has to be accounted for, every piece of the painting has to be introduced and informed and in working order with the rest of the painting. There is nothing casual about the components of my painting’s relationships to everything else. There is nothing that I’ll let go. It’s like cat’s cradle and I’m in charge. How do I know if it’s working or not? It’s not a plan as if I were dismembering a bomb or something. You can read all you want about composition but until you’re there and you have your hands on; you can’t know. So it’s only in knowing the painting, so I feel my way through and I trust that. That’s my job."