Collection: Laura Rokas



Laura Rokas (b. 1989, Saint-Jean-Sur-Richelieu, Canada) is an artist whose work explores the fluidity of identity through class, gender and the inferred understanding of material hierarchy. Rokas uses drawing, painting, ceramics and textiles to create a dreamlike world where sinister characters and beautiful objects shift effortlessly through dimensions, at once dangerous and playful. Her images are drawn from a personal mythology that is rooted in art history, pop culture and craft, mingling flat forms with highly rendered figures. Embroidered patches, both hand sewn and vintage, adorn her works, signaling group affiliations, personal preferences and evoking 90s childhood whimsy. Having been predominantly exposed to folk art while growing up, Rokas has a deep appreciation for handmade objects and a make-do sensibility to art making. A self taught textile artist, she melds utilitarian craft with her laborious technical fine art skills to retaliate against a culture that praises fast production and low quality over mindful expression.

Rokas received an MFA at the San Francisco Art Institute in 2016 where she was awarded the Graduate Fellowship, the Murphy and Cadogan Award, the Alan B Stone Painting Scholarship and the Anne Bremer Award. Rokas has been exhibited internationally as well as extensively in the Bay Area including a recent solo presentation at 1599fdT Gallery in San Francisco as well as at CTRL-SHFT Gallery in Oakland, NIAD Center in Richmond CA, La Esquina in Kansas City, MO, the San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art, Jack Hanley Gallery in New York, FOFA Gallery in Montréal, the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art in Toronto and the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa.  A three-time recipient of the Elizabeth Greenshields Grant, Rokas was also awarded an endowment from the Québec Council for the Arts, and was selected as a finalist in the 2017 Royal Bank of Canada painting competition. Born in Saint-Jean-Sur-Richelieu, Québec, Canada, she now lives and works in San Francisco where she is a studio member at Minnesota Street Projects.


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