Arizona State University
I create figurative portrait paintings of LGBTQ+ identified and Queer-allied women, most recently focusing on those who have impacted my life in some way. My work toys with the concepts of glorification, objectification and modification, touching on the mutability of identity, gender and beauty. Although I enjoy working in a variety of mediums, I have come to focus on painting because of its primarily masculine history in the western art canon.
A portrait inherently objectifies its subject. The female body in particular has been portrayed in a multitude of societal, cultural, scientific and historical contexts that build a sense of glorification, and sometimes eroticism. The ‘ideal’ female anatomy has changed over time, with varying aesthetics that metamorphose based on age, race, geography and time period. For centuries humans have embraced body modification as a means of expression, rites of passage, religious beliefs and cultural aesthetics. Body art, plastic surgery and piercings are not uncommon among the women you see in my work.
Dedicated to my studio practice, I intend to continue making art throughout the course of my life, no matter what path my career may take. In the future, I see my artwork stimulating dialogue in both the feminist and mainstream art worlds.
Born in America, Sydney-based Kim Leutwyler migrated to Australia in 2012. She works in a variety of media including painting, installation, ceramics, printmedia and drawing. Kim holds concurrent bachelor degrees in Studio and Art History from Arizona State University, and additionally graduated from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago with a Painting and Drawing degree.
Kim’s current work takes its form in paintings dealing with images of beauty, gender and Queer-identity. She has come to focus on painting as a medium because of its primarily masculine history in the western art canon. By entering into the modernist painting field Kim hopes to destabilize gender borders just as LGBTQ artists have been doing since the 70’s and earlier. Her artwork has been exhibited in multiple galleries throughout the United States and Australia.
Leutwyler's recent accolades include being selected as a finalist in the Archibald, Sulman and Bluethumb Art Prizes, as well as the Portia Geach Memorial Award. She also won the Midsumma Visual Arts Guide Cover Competition, and her painting was the hero image for the 2016 LGBTQ Festival in Melbourne, Australia.