Artist Series: Katie Gong

Meet our Featured Artist, Katie of @katie.gong— sculptor and wood worker based in California. Inspired by the physical beauty of the Golden State's landscape, steaming and bending wood into magnificent sculptors. Today we chat with Katie about her process as an artist & Mother:

Katie & her Kiddos wearing our Toast Utility Suit & Toast Waffle Jammie Set.
We're completely in awe of the different shapes shown throughout your wooden sculptures, can you tell us more about your process bringing these to life? The shapes of my sculptures are inspired by nature. I am inspired by shapes that I see all around me. The squiggle came from roving mountain scapes.

From your Knot Chain to your Standing Squiggle — did it take time to discover your signature style? Yes, developing my signature style has been an ongoing process. It all started with my material. I exclusively use Rattan. I like to create new pieces and experiment but only with this material. This process helps me keep everything similar but different.
Balancing motherhood and your work is no easy feat, how do you unwind and find rest? This is an area where I sometimes excel and sometimes struggle. Motherhood is amazing but it is challenging in that there is never enough time in the day to be present with my kiddos, family, husband as well as present with my art. I have found that the times that I struggle with this is when I try to do too many things at once. Then I’m just climbing uphill and can feel so torn between my work and artistry and wanting to be a good mother. The times when I excel are when I have a clear plan of what is actually accomplishable with the time that I have. The key is problem solving and not being too hard on myself when the plans have to change or I can’t finish what I’ve started.
Your favorite album to play in the background while working in your studio? Right now it’s St. Cloud by Waxahatchee and Charlie Brown Christmas on repeat.

How do you channel positive energy during this hectic time of year? Oh man, this time of year really is a doozy. I try to stay positive by doing something small for myself or my family everyday. Something that sparks joy, making pancakes or doing an art project with my toddler. It’s tough though with the stress of scheduling, getting things shipped and sent out on time. Just trying to keep it easy and mellow as much as possible really helps me stay on the level.

What have you been reading or listening to these days that has inspired you? I mean with two young kids and a 14 year old I really don’t have a ton of down time to read, to be honest. I do like to look at Art books when I can, my favorite book is a Ruth Asawa book that my husband got me and the other is the George Nakashima, Soul of a tree.

Explore Katie's Website & Instagram

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