Kayla Mohammadi, born in San Francisco, CA, now resides in Boston, MA. Mohammadi received her BFA in 1998 from the University of Washington in Seattle and her MFA in 2002 from Boston University. Currently, she is a Lecturer in fine arts at Massachusetts College of Arts. She has been a visiting artist and lecturer at Brandeis University, Waltham, MA, St. Mary's College in Maryland, the University of Massachusetts, Boston, Northeastern University, MassArt, and the Fogg Art Museum at Harvard University, Cambridge, MA.
Awards include: The 2008 Joan Mitchell Foundation Award for painters, The Dedalus Foundation Award for a fellowship at Vermont Studio Center in 2008, The Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation Grant for 2006, Blanche E. Coleman Award for 2004, the Constantin Alajalov Scholarship, and Vermont Studio School Fellowship in 2001.
Working from observation—landscape, interior, or still life—Kayla Mohammadi seeks visual translation rather than literal portrayal in her paintings. Influenced by her dual Finnish and Persian heritage, her work seeks the unexpected place we encounter through sudden, fresh juxtapositions of form and color. In Mohammadi's paintings, memory, formal elements, and observation are competing energies that coalesce, asking us familiar questions: Can I walk into this space? Do I want to? Am I standing on solid ground, being pushed away, or finally stepping through to a new place?