Ken Freeman was born in small border town in Texas. Although he started painting in high school, he would instead use photography after graduating from the University of Central Oklahoma as his artistic way of expressing himself. His photography career lasted for a little more than a decade before he realized his love of it had faded with technology invading his career. He spent most of his time wondering from meaningless job to the next. Although, he did spend 20 years teaching Field Artillery Survey until he retired in 2006. Eventually he moved to Taiwan to teach English with his wife. About ten years ago, things changed for him. While teaching English as a second language in Taiwan, he stumble upon painting again. This time, he realized that painting was truly his way of fulfilling the emptiness inside of him and giving his life meaning. Today, his works continue to be privately collected around the world.
I like to think that I am unique and have something important to share with the world, but in reality, I paint because I love it. Painting gives me something that I need but never really felt I had before, and that is freedom. Freedom to do whatever I want and step outside the box where I feel most comfortable. I think, if I had actually gone to school to study art, I would be painting for masters, teachers, galleries, and the public instead of painting for myself. I am self-taught.
My paintings are true reflections of how I feel because there are no plans, ideas, goals, color theory or fear. Like Jackson Pollock, I loose myself in the painting. I’m not aware of any whys, censorship, or rules. It’s just me, paint, paper or canvas and my subconscious interpretation of shapes, forms and their relationship to me.
I like to paint on a hard surface so I can add paint and scrape or sand it off. I like pushing the brush hard into the painting surface. There’s always tension in my life, and this is represented by the labor of adding and subtracting literally. It’s a process of negotiating an understanding of the why’s that motivate me in the pursuit of understanding. I keep doing that for as long as it takes until I am inspired by what I see. Eventually, the colors and shapes come alive, and I paint what I see and feel. My paintings always start as abstracts and sometimes I stop at that. I love abstracts, but most of the time, the painting is an inner exploration of visual distractions found in daily life that I call mind-scapes. They are the events of the day, memories of the past, and muses of the future that come to the surface with faces inside of faces, animals, numbers and expressions, all connecting into a single timeline.
For 2020, my newest projects are termed as Urban Abstract Neo Expressionism. They are a combination of street art and graffiti that are translated into an abstraction.