Lael Burns

Lael earned her BFA in Painting from Southern Methodist University in 2001 and her MA and a MFA in Painting from the University of Iowa in 2005. Lael was recently selected by juror Jessica Roscio, curator of Danforth Art Museum, to have work featured in this winter’s publication of Studio Visit Magazine. She is curently in residency with “An Artist Residency in Motherhood”, a conceptual residency community curated by Lenka Clayton that focuses on “a reframing of parenthood as a valuable site for creative practice, rather than an obstruction to be overcome”. Lael actively exhibits her work in various galleries and art spaces throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex and US, including a solo exhibition currently up at the Fort Worth Community Arts Center. Lael has taught art at the secondary and college level and currently lives in the Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas area with her family.


My work contrasts visual elements from personal childhood experiences such as craft materials, domestic patters, and hot rod car graphics and colors with soft, delicately rendered, life-giving organic forms, making connections between the visceral, graphic, sublime, and carnal. I create spaces and forms where seemingly disparate elements and materials coexist meaningfully through constructed environments to express my fascination with the tensions between the spiritual, scientific, and material aspects of life. My paintings strive to have a visceral presence by virtue of formal aesthetics, describing a densely personal world birthed out of manufactured colors and muscle car paint jobs.

My studio practice is broken into short, opportunistic, systematic bursts. As a mother, my mental space and daily routines are constantly interrupted into wonderful fragments. Both everyday life and painting are a process of creating order, beauty, and cleanliness out of chaos and raw human emotion. As a collection of incomplete, mutated thought patterns that are organized by means of intuition, my work speaks to ideas of personal transformation, redemption, and renewal.