Ari Salka (b. 1993 in Seattle, WA) is an LA-based artist who primarily works through writing, painting, and drawing. Salka holds a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2016) and MFA in Painting from UCLA (2019). In addition, Salka studied at the Yale Norfolk Summer School of Art and received the Ellen Battell Stoeckel Fellowship in Norfolk, CT (2015).
I paint self-portraits of my trans body, representing current and past selves. These bodies, these people, and sometimes lovers of past selves, are constantly shifting, through rebirths, enmeshing, while also differentiating from one another. Ghosts from the past emerge from earthly forms, signifying dysphoric rebirth and resurrection. Water is both weighted and buoyant, and the presence of sutures straddle fragility and strength. The self is oftentimes lost in translation, shifting in and out of differentiation from oneself to another version of self. Through repetition, expansiveness, and reclusiveness, my work battles distinctions between celebration and dismay.