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Kathryn Kailian: Coming Out of the Dark

September 25 - November 19, 2021



Images: Flowers from a Friend, Acrylic on Canvas, 48 x 60 in, 2020. Embrace During Corona, Acrylic on Canvas, Oil on Canvas, 48 x 60 in, 2020. Chicken Bones are Beautiful, Acrylic on Canvas, 36 x 36 in, 2021.

Washington, DCWashington Studio School (WSS) is pleased to present Coming Out of The Dark, an exhibition of more than 30 paintings selected from several distinct bodies of work by Kathryn Kailian. The exhibition celebrates Kailian’s graduation from WSS’s Master Certificate Program and marks the first exhibition at WSS since April 2020. The exhibition will be on view from September 25 to November 19, 2021.

Kailian writes, “My Armenian history is rich with joy, amazing cuisine, culture, and the strength of survival. Preservation of our language and architecture are themes of my life and art. Our story reverberates with tragedy, resilience, and beauty, all of which pervades my work. The fight for justice relates deeply to my more intense paintings. My process is free, surprising, emotional, and gratifying. I start with an image, a scene, and the mirror; deciphering myself is an integral aspect of the process. I interpret the relationship of the shapes and negative spaces then free the form and color onto the canvas. I amplify, reduce, distort, simplify, exaggerate. I stand when I paint and dance when the work gets exciting.”

The paintings presented, created over a period of four years, exemplify Kailian’s interest in various subject matter ranging from the self and other human and natural subjects to her cultural heritage, translating onto the canvas in vivid colors and intersecting shapes. The exhibition also marks the inauguration of Washington Studio School’s new partnership with the online art marketplace, Artsy. Most artworks on display are for sale will be featured on our forthcoming partner page, launching Friday, October 1.

About the Artist

Kailian has lived in Washington, DC since 1993. She holds a Master Certificate of Drawing and Painting from Washington Studio School, a Masters in Education with a major in art studying painting and goldsmithing from the Tyler School of Art & Design, and a BFA from Boston University. In a previous life, she was an art teacher and an aesthetician and credits these periods and her move to Washington, D.C. from Pennsylvania as leading her back to the study of self-expression.

About Washington Studio School

Washington Studio School (WSS) is a nonprofit studio arts organization in Washington, DC whose mission is to teach how to see and create through drawing, painting and sculpture. We offer classes, workshops, exhibitions, and programs to engage, connect and bring people together with a fresh approach to traditional studio art. To learn more about WSS, visit

For more information, or to request images, please contact WSS Managing Director, Laila Abdul-Hadi Jadallah at

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