visual arts program

2021 Hallie Ford Fellow

Rainen Knecht


(Left to Right) "Cow Girl," 2018. Oil on canvas, 16 x 20 x ¾ in. "The Jersey Devil’s Daughter," 2020. Oil on linen with artist frame, 16 x 18 x 1 in

Employing a form of dream logic, Rainen Knecht examines beauty, humor, and horror. Her femme figures are, as she describes, “situated between a warrior princess and sturdy milkmaid.”

Clawed and distorted, they enact art historical motifs imbued with mischievous agency. In recent work, Knecht, a new mother, has studied the mother and child figure intertwined. The massive upheaval of becoming a mother, paired with the experience of witnessing her own mother’s death of cancer, is a centering gravity in Knecht’s paintings.

Knecht studied at the San Francisco Art Institute, graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2006. Her exhibition history includes solo and two-person exhibitions at Fourteen30 Contemporary, Portland, Oregon; SITUATIONS, New York, New York; and CAPITAL, San Francisco, California, as well as recent group exhibitions at Shulamit. Nazarian and Various Small Fires in Los Angeles, California; Fisher Parrish, Brooklyn, New York; Stems Gallery, Brussels, Belgium; Ditch Projects, Springfield, Oregon; and PMOMA, Portland, Oregon.



Artist Monograph PDF