• Kakegamic, Joshim (Cree, 1952–1993)

    Associated with the Woodland School, Kakegamic received early training from Norval Morrisseau and Carl Ray. He is known for championing Indigenous print production by co-founding the Triple K Cooperative. Kakegamic’s work is held at the McMichael Canadian Art Collection in Kleinberg, Ontario, and the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto.

  • Kandinsky, Wassily (Russian, 1866–1944)

    An artist, teacher, and philosopher who settled in Germany and later in France, Kandinsky was central to the development of abstract art. Much of his work conveys his interest in the relationships between colour, sound, and emotion. Concerning the Spiritual in Art (1911), his famous treatise on abstraction, draws on mysticism and theories of divinity.

  • Kane, Paul (Irish/Canadian, 1810–1871)

    Influenced by George Catlin, this nineteenth-century painter and explorer spent extensive time documenting Aboriginal peoples in North America and depicting, in a traditional European style, scenes of their culture and landscapes. The Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto houses one hundred paintings and several hundred sketches by Kane. (See Paul Kane: Life & Work by Arlene Gehmacher.)

  • Kelly, Ellsworth (American, b. 1923)

    An abstract artist from New York who matured in Paris, where he studied from 1948 to 1954, enabled by the G.I. Bill. Back in the United States he practised hard-edge colour-field painting, but, even as his rigorous style often approached Minimalism, his visual wit drew from his observations of natural forms.

  • Kenneally, Siassie (Iqalugajuk/Kinngait, b. 1969)

    A member of an unusually artistic Cape Dorset family that includes her father, the carver Kaka Ashoona, and her grandmother, the widely admired Pitseolak Ashoona. Siassie Kenneally began drawing at Kinngait Studios (formerly the West Baffin Eskimo Co-operative) in 2004. She often draws on a large scale, depicting traditional Inuit lifestyles in a contemporary manner.

  • Kent, Rockwell (American, 1882–1971)

    An illustrator as well as a landscape painter specializing in remote and stark environments including the New England coast, Alaska, and Greenland, Kent was also a labour-rights activist. His woodcut illustrations for periodicals and books, including two editions of Herman Melville’s Moby Dick, recall the style of English Romantics like William Hogarth and William Blake.

  • Kerr-Lawson, James (Scottish/Canadian, 1862–1939)

    Both a skilled lithographer and a painter of landscapes and urban scenes, Kerr-Lawson immigrated to Canada as a child. He studied first at the Ontario School of Art, and later in France and Italy. He returned to Canada in 1885, but after a brief stay he moved to Europe, establishing himself in Glasgow and London. In 1908 Kerr-Lawson became a founding member of the Senefelder Club to promote interest in lithography. He also exhibited with the Canadian Art Club from 1912 to 1915.

  • Keszthelyi, Alexander Samuel (Polish/American, 1874–1953)

    A portrait and landscape painter and etcher who spent much of his life in California. Keszthelyi studied in Vienna, taught at the Carnegie Institute from 1907 to 1910, and lived briefly in Canada. He was elected an honorary member of the short-lived Regina Society for the Advancement of Art, Literature, and Science.

  • Kettlewell, Charles William (1914–1988)

    “Bill” Kettlewell was an equestrian painter who also worked as an art director in Toronto.

  • Kiakshuk (Ungava Peninsula/Kinngait, 1886–1966)

    A gifted storyteller who took up drawing and printmaking in the last decade of his life. Like his stories, Kiakshuk’s artworks recount tales of the natural and spirit worlds, hunting, and domestic life. In addition to his drawings, engravings, and stencil and stonecut prints he also occasionally produced carvings.

  • Kilbourn, Rosemary (Canadian, b. 1931)

    A wood engraver who has lived in the rural Niagara Escarpment since the late 1950s, Kilbourn infuses her work with the spirituality and energy she finds in the land around her. She also worked in stained glass for a period beginning in the 1980s, completing numerous church commissions.

  • Kinngait Studios

    Since the mid-2000s, the arts and crafts sector of the West Baffin Eskimo Co-operative of Cape Dorset (Kinngait), Nunavut, has also been referred to as Kinngait Studios. The studio includes artist co-op members who carve, draw, and make prints.

  • Kirchner, Ernst Ludwig (German, 1880–1938)

    A painter and printmaker, Kirchner co-founded the German Expressionist group Die Brücke (The Bridge). Influenced by Edvard Munch and Vincent van Gogh, Kirchner is known for work imbued with erotic and psychological tension.

  • Klee, Paul (Swiss-German, 1879–1940)

    Primarily known as a painter of prodigious energy and imagination—his output comprises an estimated nine thousand artworks—Klee was also a printmaker, art writer, and beloved teacher, first at the Bauhaus and later at the Düsseldorf Academy.

  • Klein, Yves (French, 1928–1962)

    An important figure in the history of Minimal, Pop, and performance art, known for his interest in “pure colour” and his invention of International Klein Blue, the pigment he used in many of his famed monochrome paintings. He was also a sculptor, writer, and—significantly for a Westerner of his time—judo master.

  • Klimt, Gustav (Austrian, 1862–1918)

    A Viennese painter best known for the decorative patterns that surround his figures and for his use of gold leaf in Byzantine-influenced paintings like Adele Bloch-Bauer I, 1907, and The Kiss, 1907–8. Klimt was the first president of the Vienna Secession, a splinter group of artists who broke from Vienna’s conservative Künstlerhaus Genossenschaft (Artists House Union), rejecting the academic historical style in favour of an avant-garde approach.

  • Kline, Franz (American, 1910–1962)

    An Abstract Expressionist painter and draftsman whose gestural works drew inspiration from contemporaries such as Arshile Gorky and Willem de Kooning. From the late 1940s Kline’s paintings were largely black and white, but in the last years of his career he returned to a full-colour palette.

  • Klutsis, Gustav (Latvian, 1895–1938)

    A painter, sculptor, graphic artist, and designer, Klutsis became a prominent Russian Constructivist, known for his agitprop art, particularly posters (which were printed in the tens of thousands) in support of the early Soviet state. Klutsis is recognized as a leading developer of the photomontage technique. In the late 1930s, during a Stalinist purge, the artist was arrested and subsequently killed in prison.

  • Knowles, Farquhar McGillivray (Canadian, 1859–1932)

    Born in Syracuse, New York, Knowles became a noted Toronto painter, active in the city from the 1880s to 1920. He became a member of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts (RCA) in 1898. His work is in the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, and other major collections in Canada.

  • Kokoschka, Oskar (Austrian, 1886–1980)

    A painter, printmaker, and writer celebrated for his deeply expressive portraits and landscapes. An important figure in European modernism, Kokoschka sought to give visual form to the immaterial aspects of our world. Spiritual, psychological, and emotional forces are rendered through turbulent forms and luminous effects.

  • Kosuth, Joseph (American, b. 1945)

    A leading figure of conceptual art, known for his exploration of the relationship between language, objects, and meaning. Kosuth believes that individual artistic persona and skill should be removed from art in favour of the purity of the idea. His seminal work, One and Three Chairs, 1965, presents a physical chair along with its photograph and a textual definition. The work emphasizes the idea of an object over hierarchies of representation.

  • Krieghoff, Cornelius (Dutch/Canadian, 1815–1872)

    A painter who emigrated to the United States from Europe in 1837 and then moved to Canada. Krieghoff was drawn to First Nations peoples and environments as subjects; he also painted landscapes and scenes of everyday Canadian life.

  • Krushenick, Nicholas (American, 1929–1999)

    A forerunner to the Pop art movement in America, Krushenick was a painter known for his fusion of Pop art and abstraction. Hard-edged black lines surrounding bright, solid colours in abstract formation characterize his work, particularly of the 1960s. His work is held by major public institutions, including New York’s Museum of Modern Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam.

  • Kubrick, Stanley (American, 1928–1999)

    One of the most celebrated filmmakers of the twentieth century, whose influence extends internationally and across creative mediums, from cinema to painting. Among his numerous landmark productions are 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), A Clockwork Orange (1971), and The Shining (1980).

  • Kuchar, Mike (American, b. 1942), and George Kuchar (American, 1942–2011)

    Twin brothers and experimental filmmakers, active from their teenage years on the New York film scene alongside Andy Warhol, Stan Brakhage, Ken Jacobs, Michael Snow, and Joyce Wieland. The Kuchars’ renowned 8mm films include I Was a Teenage Rumpot (1960) and The Devil’s Cleavage (1973)—ultra-low-budget versions of Hollywood genre movies.

  • Kunuk, Zacharias (Kapuivik, b. 1957)

    A filmmaker and producer whose film Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner (2001) was the first Inuit-made feature film entirely in Inuktitut with an all-Indigenous cast. In 1988 Kunuk co-founded the independent production company Igloolik Isuma Productions, based in Nunavut. He has championed Inuit self-representation through broadcast media and video in order to prevent further collective memory loss due to the influence of foreign missionaries, priests, schools, and mass media. Kunuk received the Golden Camera Award at the 2001 Cannes Film Festival.

  • Kupka, František (Czech, 1871–1957)

    An abstract painter and satirical illustrator known for his exploration of theosophy, religion, music, and theories of motion through colour and geometry, Kupka studied at the art academies in Prague and Vienna before settling in Paris in 1896. He was influenced by the Manifesto of Futurism (1909), written by Filippo Tommaso Marinetti, and by Cubism, Fauvism, and Pointillism, though he did not identify with any one movement. In 1912, he became the first artist to publicly exhibit abstract paintings. In 1931, he was a founding member of the Abstraction-Création group, which included Jean Arp and Theo van Doesburg.

     

  • Kurelek, William (Canadian, 1927–1977)

    Born on a farm in Alberta to Ukrainian immigrants, Kurelek was a painter of trompe l’oeil objects, scenes of his childhood farm life, religious subjects, and apocalyptic visions influenced by the Cold War and current events. His suffering from an unspecified mental illness and periodic admissions into psychiatric hospitals led him to devout Catholicism in the mid-1950s. In 1959 Toronto gallerist Avrom Isaacs gave Kurelek his first solo exhibition. In the 1960s Kurelek became one of the most commercially successful artists in Canada. (See William Kurelek: Life & Work by Andrew Kear.)

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