STORIES FROM PAFA

Clarity Haynes

“My work is cultural intervention,” says Clarity Haynes (Cert ‘03), who credits her experience at PAFA with her ability to capture the human form in ways that change conventional conversations about identity and aging. Haynes started “The Breast Project” out of a need to address her own body issues.  “It started with a self-portrait,” says Haynes.

Haynes knew from the time that she was 16 years old that she wanted to be an artist, and a mentor demonstrated to her the importance of working on one’s craft constantly. This philosophy is also what drew her to PAFA. “The best ideas come from doing,” says Haynes. “[PAFA’s] emphasis on the figure, the emphasis on anatomy.

Haynes’s work has been exhibited extensively throughout the U.S., including the recent Artist House Gallery exhibition, which honored PAFA faculty and alumni. The piece (pictured) entitled “Ellen,” was modeled after a fashion designer and former ballet dance, who is also a long-time friend of Clarity’s.

Haynes says that the most valuable aspects of her experience in PAFA’s Certificate Program in Painting are too many to name, but that the influences of the instructors that she worked with at PAFA helped to transform her style. “When I started out, my work was very impressionistic,” Haynes explains. “

“We get twisted in our identity and we don’t know what we look like. I’m not a caricature, I’m human being. I have beauty. I have grace, just the way [we] are.”


About PAFA

Founded in 1805, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts is America's first school and museum of fine arts. A recipient of the National Medal of Arts, PAFA offers undergraduate and graduate programs in the fine arts, innovative exhibitions of historic and contemporary American art, and a world-class collection of American art. PAFA’s esteemed alumni include Mary Cassatt, Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Thomas Eakins, William Glackens, Barkley L. Hendricks, Violet Oakley, Louis Kahn, David Lynch, and Henry Ossawa Tanner.