Kaarina Lee is a Sudbury-based artist who works mainly in acrylic paint, layering bright, bold colours with black line work. A graduate of Sudbury Secondary School’s Visual Arts Program, Lee has built and diversified her artistic repertoire over the years, journeying into mixed media and exploring notions of femininity and what it means to be a mother.
In 2017, her first formal exhibition—appropriately titled “Divine Feminine”—was held at The Laughing Buddha in downtown Sudbury. Organized and facilitated by the Art Gallery of Sudbury’s off-site exhibitions program, “Divine Feminine” showcased Kaarina’s archetypal symbolism in her use of the female form as goddess, as well as in her incorporation of natural images of flowers and mushrooms. In her work, everything is organic, holistic, and growing, and that is part of its thematic appeal.
Kaarina strongly believes that art—both its creation and its appreciation—can help people to heal. For many years, she has facilitated creative workshops in the mental health field, organizing art exhibitions to showcase the artwork of mental health survivors. As she says, “Making art is a cathartic and healing experience, offering a person the ability to move through dis-ease and discomfort to discover a brighter, lighter world.”