"Beginning anew. New trust, new energy, new direction, new hope."
- Addison Barker
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Acrylic on Canvas
40" x 20"
“Being neurodivergent comes with many obstacles, but I also know it is the very reason I would never give up on myself.”
Addison Barker creates highly intuitive, expressionist paintings that incorporate repetition, simplicity, and connection. Born in Illinois, she grew up with a box of crayons in hand. Over the years, she continued to feel a pull towards art and began exploring new mediums, which led her to abstract painting. This has evolved into her strongest passion and also a tool for communication.
As a neurodivergent individual, Addison is motivated by the fact that she can communicate through her art. She describes, “I am driven to make art because communication is complicated for me, and the brushstrokes give life to emotions and experiences I cannot find the words for.” She also explains, “creativity for me encourages understanding and movement forward. It provides escape and peace, and a means of expression. It’s often about looking forward, letting go and what happens next.”
With art as a vehicle of expression and growth, Addison continues to experiment, but also has distinct characteristics of her work. She prefers using acrylic paint because of its transformative nature and working on paper because of its simplicity. With a minimalist approach to materials, she tends to use only certain hues of color and just a few varied brush sizes, which allows for concentrated, recognizable work.
Additionally, Addison prefers to work in series and collections. She begins multiple pieces at once, alternating her focus and letting the artwork intuitively emerge. As one piece evolves, it may bring forth new ideas and lead her to adjust the direction of other pieces in that series. Each piece builds on the others, as a feeling of summation is achieved.
Speaking on this process, Addison explains, “My process is repetitive, and I consider that a big part of my style, but that repetition in creating can still provide many different outcomes.” Methodical and expressionist, her style and process may seem contradictory, but find a way to mesh together beautifully.
Being a part of ArtLifting excites her because it gives rise to potential for her to positively impact her career and family. She shares, “Being part of this inclusive community of artists is a unique opportunity to grow professionally. It brings the fulfillment that comes with a purposeful career, validating my strength as an artist and providing compensation for my work. This not only greatly impacts my career, but also my family and our future.”
As a military spouse, Addison has proudly supported her husband through multiple deployments and relocating the family every few years. These circumstances have added to the unique challenges she has faced in her career. “ArtLifting brings opportunity and inclusion which can allow me to gain momentum and stability in my career,” she explains.
She dreams of creating art with a bigger purpose, supporting social justice issues she is passionate about such as disability rights, women’s rights and health equity. “I love that art can speak in so many different ways. It can serve a true purpose and stand for something more than just being pretty to look at,” Addison says. She hopes to gain traction in her career enough to donate a portion of her profits to organizations that support these causes. In her free time, she enjoys spending quality time with her husband, who is her biggest supporter, and their three children.
ArtLifting champions artists impacted by homelessness or disabilities through the celebration and sale of their artwork. Learn more here.