As a painter and sculptor, I draw inspiration from natural forms such as seeds, tree branches and feats of nature like bird nests and spider webs.  The repeated forms I paint and sculpt are often serene and elemental in feel and explore themes of dimensionality, motion and dynamics in space.  My interest in site-specific public art is two fold: first, I seek opportunities to place art where it is accessible to a broader audience, one that is not necessarily seeking art in museums or galleries. Second, I see the role that art can play in activating a public space when the aesthetic choices made by the artist integrate the architecture and function of the space itself. Art that is integral to a public setting has the potential then to positively affect how people perceive their environment, by either calling attention to the physical space around them or by causing them to feel a sense of wonder, inspiration or ease without even knowing quite why. 


Emily Payne grew up in Mill Valley, California and Amherst, Massachusetts. She received her B.A. from Oberlin College in Ohio and her M.F.A. in Book Arts and Printmaking from San Francisco State University. Her work can be seen at the Seager Gray Gallery in Mill Valley, the SFMOMA Artist Gallery in San Francisco and Kala Art Institute and the Gardener in Berkeley.