Oklahoma Contemporary
Yatika Fields (Photo: Nicole Donis)
An artist paints a canvas in a studio

New Light

March 26, 2020

VIDEO: Illuminations with Yatika Fields

The Bright Golden Haze artist talks landscapes, graffiti aesthetics and ultra-running
Two adults stand in front of a large, brightly colored painting of an abstract landscape
Eternal Sun by Yatika Fields, on display in Oklahoma Contemporary's inaugural Bright Golden Haze exhibition.

Oklahoma painter and muralist Yatika Starr Fields (Osage/Cherokee/Muscogee Creek) found his first inspiration in the streets. As a student at the Art Institute of Boston, the young artist discovered an urban environment pulsing with excitement and possibility. He began exploring graffiti aesthetics, which spoke to him through its emphasis on fluidity, movement and spontaneity.

Making street art became a sort of high-stakes performance practice for Fields, in which a work of art could come dazzlingly to life under the cover of night. "You're painting quickly, and you're moving quickly," he said. "I took those aesthetics with me into my fine art practice and oil painting. I'm using full-body movement and a lot of activity and force. It's very gestural."

Now Fields brings those aesthetics and strategies to bear on the natural environment. His vibrant landscapes — like Eternal Sun, specially commissioned for Oklahoma Contemporary's inaugural Bright Golden Haze exhibition — reveal the sharp eye and stylistic restlessness of a bold, innovative artist who remixes classicism and urban sensibilities to create worlds both familiar and fantastical.

In today's debut installment of Oklahoma Contemporary's new video series, Illuminations, Fields talks about his journey as an artist, the colors of nature and the joys of ultra marathon running.

Image: Yatika Fields (Osage/Cherokee/Muscogee Creek). Eternal Sun, 2020. Oil on canvas. 6 ½ x 13 ft. Courtesy of the artist. Photo by Alex Marks.

Photo of Yatika Fields in studio by Nicole Donis.

Tags tags
painting artist interview Yatika Starr Fields landscape Bright Golden Haze ultra running Illuminations Exhibitions

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