Barb Kobe


Mentor Statement

“…women’s experiences are very different from men’s. As we grow up socially, psychologically and every other way, our experiences are just different. Therefore, our art is going to be different.” -Joan Snyder

As a WARM mentor I believe that my primary responsibility is to create an intentional creative space for the mentoring relationship to grow and thrive. I am a creativity coach and mentor who spends time and energy listening and communicating with my mentee in order to understand her style and approach to her artmaking. I think that it is important that a mentee be willing to explore who she is as a creative woman and artist, this means taking creative risks, asks questions of herself and her mentor, be willing to learn, stretch and develop as a feminist artist.

As a WARM mentor I help the artist to create a structure-to-grow-from that includes defining learning and communication styles, boundaries and rules of engagement. I believe that we all have dreams, wishes and visions for our art and that it is my job as mentor to invite dialog that encourages the mentee to connect with these visions and play with concepts and art materials. Ultimately I hope that the mentee will see me as one of her allies, trust her creative process and in doing so invite inspiration and intuition as an important partner on her journey.

Feminist artists seek to change the world around them through their art. They focus on women’s experiences to influence cultural attitudes and transform stereotypes. Art is not merely an object for aesthetic admiration; it can also incite the viewer to question the social and political landscape, and through this questioning, possibly affect the world and incite change toward equality.

Feminist artists embrace alternative non-traditional media, incorporating fabric, fiber, clay, performance, and video to expand the definition of fine arts to include a wider variety of media and artistic perspectives produced from the woman’s perspective.

My statement
It is my experience that making art is transformative, changing and empowering. For me, learning about feminist artists and being part of this program has empowered me to find my feminine voice and express my feminine qualities through my art making, showing and sharing.

My artmaking process has taught me about the power of expressing my feelings, thoughts and stories through my art. When I show my art whether in a gallery, on my website through social media or writing a book, I am creating a dialogue between the viewer and the artwork that includes the inclusion of one women’s perspective. In fact, In Sue Monk Kidd’s book Dance of Dissident Daughter she said, “The truth is, in order to heal, change and grow we need to tell our stories and have them witnessed.” I found stories hidden my dolls, my stories, ancestor stories, women’s stories and through the making process, along with creating art in my art journals, I found long lost parts of myself, and was able to step into my power as a woman and enter arenas that have given me fear in the past.

If you choose to participate in the WARM program and engage with your mentor and this community of mentors and artists, you will connect to a community of allies who will help you to create a special path for yourself that allows you to look within yourself, listen to yourself and your art and develop and expand your own ways of expressing your deep feminine, feminist self.

View Barb’s Healing Doll Poster: Poster

Top image:  Finding Pomegranite