Maiya Lea Hartman is an acrylic painter and mixed-media artist born and raised in Minneapolis, MN. Being a self-taught artist, their work has largely been informed by generational influences. Growing up Maiya spent much time watching their dad draw and paint and was encouraged to create without setting self-imposed limitations. This has shaped the approach they take to creating today.
The work that Maiya creates is influenced by observations they make of the world around them. They often examine how our environments affect our ability to express our needs and feelings, both as individuals and communities, by exploring human nature and examining the way we interact with our environment. The subjects of their portraiture are both real and imagined. They often use self-portraits as a means of understanding their own connection to identity and environment. By using mixed-media materials familiar to childhood, such as glitter and sequence Maiya enhances complex narratives being explored and draws on nostalgia playfully.
Maiya is notably one of the 9 emerging artists in residence at Studio400 in the NE Arts Districts’ Northrup King Building. This past winter Maiya displayed a body of work titled “At Home” at Rosedale Center in Roseville, MN as part of their fall/winter exhibit “Who You Are”. Some of Maiya’s earlier pen drawings were also on exhibition at the Katherine E. Nash Gallery as part of “The Beginning of Everything” group drawing exhibit alongside Diego Rivera and Henri Mattise this past Spring. They will be displaying several works in Disquietude, an exhibition opening September 10th at White Bear Center for The Arts. In response to the recent murder of George Floyd and the subsequent uprising, Maiya began working with Creatives After Curfew-a group of BIPOC artists creating murals around Minneapolis. Their art’s focus was in solidarity with a push for the abolition of police, community led safety, and imaging a future rooted in justice and liberation.