Welcome to M2057's Spotlight Series: In Her Own Words, which features dynamic, stylish, and powerful women who inspire us.
This month, we spoke with Art Institute Research Associate Katie Kremnitzer.
Originally from New York, Katie Kremnitzer has studied art since high school. Printmaking and art history were her introduction to art, which eventually led to a focus on nineteenth-century paintings, drawings, and prints in graduate school. That background led her to a job at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, where she discovered a life goal of becoming a curator. Today, Katie is a research associate in the Painting and Sculpture of Europe Department at the Art Institute of Chicago, where she contributes to research on their permanent collection. She is currently working on the Monet and Chicago exhibit, which highlights the city's early and ongoing relationship with the Impressionist artist.
SPECIAL THANKS TO LEAH MISSBACH DAY FOR THE BEAUTIFUL PHOTOGRAPHY FOR THIS SPOTLIGHT.
IN HER WORDS...
CHALLENGES I'VE FACED AT WORK: I work in a field that can be quite competitive but, early on, realized the power of collaboration and am fortunate to have forged bonds with like-minded colleagues around the world who are committed to working together, strategizing best practices, sharing resources, and expanding narratives.
WHAT I LOVE ABOUT BEING A WOMAN: From a young age I was enchanted by my own family history, especially old photographs and archival documents. I pieced together narratives with a common theme: finding a better life. I often think of myself in a matriarchal line - from my great-great-grandmother, whose daughter immigrated to this country alone at the tender age of 13 around the turn of the twentieth-century, through my grandmother, who is still the clearest voice in my head, and my mom, who guides my moral compass - and am eternally grateful for and grounded by these strong, caring, and enterprising women. In my proudest moments and darkest days, I draw upon their collective force, fierce loyalty, undiscriminating compassion, and profound sense of responsibility to find my own way, following in their footsteps.
MY FAVORITE M2057 PIECES: I have so many, individually and in combination! I keep coming back to the Loujaya dress and Elke jacket, which I ofter wear together - I love the subtle play of planes from the back, seeing the dress through the open interstices of the laser cut jacket. My maternal grandmother, who though departed remains my guided force, used to love what she called "illusion" when it came to clothes and this jacket is exactly that, a tease of texture and shape.
WHAT I LOVE ABOUT THE M2057 COLLECTION: Careful construction, raw hems, two-way zippers - each garment retains a reliable structure and I love that the wearer is free to choose how low to plunge a neckline or how high to take a slit.
BEST GIFT I'VE EVER RECEIVED: I love the idea of a tattoo but would never get one. Instead, I get a piece of jewelry engraved with the message I would otherwise wear on my body. The best gift I ever received is a cuff with my grandmother's handwriting etched on the exterior and my mom's on the interior. I wear it every day and often read the inscriptions to feel closer to them.
WHAT I'M WATCHING RIGHT NOW: I may be a little late to the game but LOVED Call My Agent, a French show available on Netflix - three seasons got me through sleepless nights and longing to travel with the fourth and final season only weeks away!
WHAT BRINGS ME JOY: Being back in the galleries is pure joy, especially now.