Catherine Grossrieder, (b. 1984, Bangkok), is an artist and graphic designer based in Hong Kong. She is also known by her street art moniker “Cath Love.” Her mixed heritage (Grossrieders’ mother is Thai, and her father is Swiss) has meant that she’s been influenced by a wealth of both Asian and Western art. The artist’s adolescence was spent in Hong Kong, yet summer vacations through the 90s took her to Swtizerland where she learnt of the local graffiti and hip-hop culture.
Grossrieder has a BA in visual communications from the University of Newcastle, from where she graduated in 2005. She has since gained an MA in Design from the University of Technology, Sydney, Australia. Further, Grossrieder was an artist in residence at the Singapore International School in 2014, and has worked with both the Canadian International school, and Victoria Shanghai Academy.
ASPiRiNG TO BE ANGEL
‘Aspiring to be Angel’ is an exhibition of paintings by Hong Kong based artist Catherine Grossrieder (b. 1984, Bangkok). The artists mixed heritage and rich travel history has imbued the paintings in this show with an opulent cultural diversity. The works are mature in their social understanding, supported by the artists painterly skill and dexterity. Her comfort with the medium is clear, and her narrative talents make for an articulate yet surreal tale of adolescence. Whilst the artists foremost focus is fine art, she also creates graffiti art under her alias ‘Cath Love.’ This more graphic and lyrical style of working informs her more traditional acrylic paintings on canvas, and vice versa. Grossrieder’s subject characters are devised from the subcultures that she was a part of in Hong Kong. She celebrates her teenage self: the first girl to tag and paint graffiti with her “skater friends on the streets of Hong Kong.”
Comic artists including Jamie Hewlett and Robert Crumb were early inspirations for Grossrieder. Exposure to comics and cartoons of different cultures on her travels deepened her visual comprehension and shaped the direction that she has followed as a contemporary artist. Clear is her respect for surrealist greats including Salvador Dali, and Niki de Saint Phalle. Demonstrated by the chicken motif that has seeped into her creative consciousness, Grossrieder enjoys picking up on the nuance of her surroundings and the satire that exists in the everyday. The painter pays homage to life’s many tones in her artworks.
Catherine Grossrieders’ more recent artworks are refined and feel intentional. In previous years they have been more crowded and chaotic. The aim of these busier paintings was to overwhelm. Grossrieder hoped that the audiences’ visual senses would be over stimulated, and an excitement or delight in finding little surprises within each piece would prevail. ‘Aspiring to be Angel’ homes in on the individual and tells more intimately of the life illustrated.