The Linda A. Day Endowed Student Award


Kiara Machado

2017 Linda A. Day Endowed Student Award Recipient

Born in Los Angeles, California, in 1993, Kiara Machado is a Southern California-based artist, who received her BFA for Drawing and Painting from California State Long Beach. Influenced by the work of Kerry James Marshall, and how he confronts the absence of the black figure from art history, Kiara references his paintings to


learn from them. Mainly working with oil on canvas, her use of multicolored hues and camouflaged figures has become prominent within her new body of work. She is influenced by the complexities of identity and underrepresentation that marginalized communities experience, specifically folks from Central America. Kiara has shown at the Dutzi, Werby, Max L. Gatov Gallery in Long Beach, CA and in "Art Without Border" in Florence, Italy.

Cuarenta, 2018

Artist Statement

I am a Southern Californian based artist focused on confronting the absence of Central American figures in the art world and in a society that consistently creates erasure and glosses over our experiences. My paintings are influenced by the complexities of intersecting identities and under representation that marginalized communities’ experience. 

The vivid color consistent throughout my work is derived from color palettes that are prominent in El Salvador and Guatemala, which is where my parents are from. Dominant in my recent body of work are the plant life, and worry dolls. 

As a way to physically symbolize the erasure experienced by Central Americans that live in a Mexican hegemony, most of my figures and dolls are partially obscured or camouflaged.

With my paintings I offer an insight into my experience of being consistently rejected within institutions and by other folks that could not understand why it is so important for me to paint about the erasure experienced by Central Americans. I want to continue to create pieces that bring attention to overlooked countries and marginalized peoples.