In My Body
Locals Only Gallery, Caruso Lounge
November 17th, 2023 – January 7th, 2024
November 17th, 2023 from 5:00 – 8:00pm
“In My Body” combines artworks from my two bodies of work over the last year. All of these paintings were made during seasons of immense physical change, including several works while I was recovering from a major surgery and select works during early stages of my first pregnancy. In both seasons, I learned to (and am learning to) re-organize my external body and the shapes I make to support my delicate inner-body, while making an effort to practice radical self-love in my new, unfamiliar physical form.
I’m in my 17th week of pregnancy at the opening of this exhibition, and as my pregnancy has become more visible to the outside world, I’m noticing a self-consciousness of my rounding form. I’ve been conditioned to keep my body small my entire life, and for most of my adult life, I have abided. The body in which I’ve spent decades starving and depriving is now growing rounder as it holds and nurtures my growing baby. For the first time in 33 years, I’ve been directed to gain weight, to become rounder, to eat more. I am intuitively called to celebrate the changing shapes of my body, while feeling the pressure to remain compact and contained in a smaller form. I make an effort each day to honor my changing form by placing a hand on my belly and saying “thank you,” especially in moments when my inner-dialogue is critical.
This collection brings to question –
How do we relate to our ever-changing bodies as the body changes form, from a place of radical self-love?
What ways can we celebrate the new shapes our bodies make?
For new mothers – how do we learn to honor, rather than fix, our new-found curves that cared for (and continue to care for) our babies?
About the Artist
Courtney Griffin (she/her) is a self-taught mixed media artist living and working in Colorado. Born into an ancestral line of women artists, her call to making art at a young age felt innate. As she grew older, she focused more on “fitting in” than standing out with her creative gifts. She reconnected with her art practice in her late 20’s, when she was given a bullet journal. She gravitated to her journal daily to transform her feelings into illustrations. With her headphones on and the blank pages of her journal revealed, her body softened, her anxiety soothed and the chaos of the world quieted. She created a sanctuary of solitude in which she could make the “invisible” (fears, wounds, worries) become “visible” through illustrations and writing. This ritual supported her body in healing a health condition and reignited the spark of her creative voice. Her bullet journal gradually turned into a sketchbook, and a year later she picked up a paint brush for the first time for her first mural. Her largest work to date is a 600-square foot mural in the heart of the RiNo Art District in Denver, CO.
She discovered abstract painting in 2020, and she connected deeply to the freedom and expansiveness that was possible with abstraction. Over time her illustrative work became more non-subjective.
Her current body of work consists of mixed media paintings on natural fabrics, embellished with hand-embroidery. Her work examines her experience unleashing the wounds, fears and insecurities that have kept her small, and the revealing of her truest expression of self.