A Colorado native with a foot in Texas, Kaitlin Ziesmer is known for her massive and vibrant murals of animals going about their day in the brightest of colors and styles. Honing her skills early at Rocky Mountain College of Art & Design in the BFA program, she dances the line between street art and galleries, often showing in more than one gallery at a time. When she is not painting, she is busy stocking her Etsy site with a variety of items ranging from shirts, to stickers, to patches, and even plush skeletons. This summer she will be back at Babe Walls (an all-female mural festival) and currently has a show hanging in ILA gallery down in the Santa Fe Arts district. Keep an eye out for her amazing portraits of pop culture around Denver for a bit of nostalgia mixed with science fiction and the brightest of colors.
Kaitlin Ziesmer on Art, Books, and Libraries
- What book as a kid, influenced your imagination to pick up a crayon and begin making art?
I was a biiiiiiiig fan of The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales in elementary school. There was something really incredible and sort of dark about the illustrations in that book. I was so fascinated by them that I would man my own sort of tribute illustrations, haha.
- What book are you currently reading that influences you in either a creative way or a professional way?
I’ve been re-reading Kerouac’s On the Road. I find something very comforting about that book, and probably more so with this past year. Everyone has a bit of wanderlust going on. The creativity and wildness of the characters that come in and out of each other’s lives is something that’s very relatable. Not to mention, reading about Denver and Central City during that time and through that lease has always been something that makes me think I was born in the wrong decade.
- What do you think is the most important resource that Libraries provide to you as an artist?
Going through art school, the art book collections at the various branches, but especially the Central Branch, was very eye opening. It was a huge resource for me beyond our tiny, but mighty, school library.
- What is your current/favorite/most-used branch of the Denver Public Library?
My favorite will always be Central, just because of the feeling you get walking around there, it’s gorgeous, and the proximity to the art museum is great. My “most visited” has definitely shifted from the Central, when I was in school, to Lakewood now; since I live out here now.
- If you were offered a gigantic wall on the outside of a Library, what would your paint to display what a library means to you?
I would say, a whole collection of favorite and different animal characters, from various books (both adult and children’s), gathered in one giant colorful group <3
Ex Libris: Denver Artists is a series featuring local street artists, focusing on their connection to books and the importance of libraries to the artistic community. Series concept and interview by Sean Ryerson.