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What's With the Five?

DSC_4401_about_wwtfivePeople often ask me why my abstract art is signed kristan five while my name is Kristan Skinner. First, I want to say that I’m very proud of my last name (Skinner) because it represents my connection with my amazing family. Before I was Kristan Skinner I was Kristan Compton and I was also very proud to be a part of my original family.

…but here’s my answer to why I call myself kristan five… 

When I was a child I thought it was so cool that my birthday was 05.05, cinco de mayo, May 5th. When you’re five things like that seem like signs from the heavens above. So I started saying that five was my favorite number right about the time I was five years old. Then when I grew to my adult height It turns out I’m 5 foot 5 exactly. Coincidence! But suddenly these coincidences became meaningful to me and I noticed them everywhere. Meanwhile, from the time I was young I created art that incorporated the number five or elements in groups of five. Later in life I collected art and books with the number five and friends gave me gifts that were somehow connected with the number five. In 1999 when I started my design company there was no question that k5 design, inc. would be the name of my firm. From then on k5 became an endearing nickname. i’ve had several nicknames in my life, Special K, Stanley, Stan (because the last 4 letters of my name spell Stan) but k5 was my favorite.

I was trained to paint in the classical tradition and have done and still do representational art that ranges from an impressionistic style to photo realism. I’m also passionate about trompe l'oeil and I always sign my representational work with my given name.

However, The first time i painted abstract work I felt that it came from a different place than the realistic work I was used to creating. This abstract work came from deep within, where intuition and soul meet, I was unfamiliar with this amazing experience and found great peace through this creative process. expressing myself from this esoteric place is not an expression of what I do but who I am. I am kristan five. It’s hard to explain something that sounds so strange but feels so right.

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