Kate Bland (b.1978) is an illustrator and painter. She combines her career as an artist with a job as a book publicist. If a single theme could be said to unify her work, it would be architecture, but it isn’t bricks and mortar that interest Bland so much as the human presence that buildings embody. No matter how solid a structure may be, it discloses clues. Elevations and intersections, designed to contain space, also hint at its use. Surface details and aberrations reveal more than they conceal. Bland seeks to piece together the puzzles, inviting viewers to share her focus on the fragmentary glimpses of habitation and purpose that façades expose.
Some of her earlier exhibitions have repeatedly explored these themes. In Bland’s 2014 Miniature Salon exhibition, for example, twenty urban scenes were accommodated in hand-crafted and internally illuminated wooden boxes: each one a miniature gallery in its own right, with a spy-hole through which visitors were welcomed. In a 2017 show called Eastern Promise, Bland pinned down the shifting topography of east London in haunted watercolours that juxtaposed a bombed-out, slum-cleared past against a rapidly gentrifying present.
Along with private commissions and book illustrations, Bland regularly exhibits drawings, photography and paintings in group and solo shows.