Creative Feature Friday: Kerri Garrett
The multidisciplinary artist Kerri Garrett, shared a bit about herself and how she navigates art,
mental health and community.
1. Can you introduce yourself?
I am Kerri Garrett. Pisces sun, cancer moon, and gemini rising. Lover of sweet potatoes and slow jams (especially on rainy days). I’m from Columbus, Ohio and based in Atlanta, Georgia. I’m a myriad of titles. Actor. Dancer/Choreographer. Model. Director. Producer. Curator. CEO of House of Productions (an Atlanta based artist collective and production house). But I like to go by Creative Alchemist, because I am a multidisciplinary artist. I bring visions, ideas, stories to fruition. I’m passionate about so many things. My family, eating good, traveling, Living and Enjoying life, art (duh), self care… What really drives me is my people. Black people. I’m inspired by how we live, breathe, feel. Our stories and legacies. How we create and commune. Everything in the diaspora.
2. What was your first introduction to the arts?
I would probably say dance. I was in my first dance class at 3 years old. My parents raised me and my sisters within the arts. We did everything from plays to West African drumming. I always knew I wanted to be an artist. I’m just so blessed to have grown up within Columbus’ Black arts community. It really is a gem.
3. How is art and your emotional state connected?
Art helps me to navigate and express my emotions. I feel very deeply and have always had the gift of sensitivity. When I feel emotions that are too heavy for me to carry, like grief, art gives me a space to place it. Art helps me understand and ask questions about my emotions. Digging deeper into the “why” and source of the feeling.
4. What does mental health mean to you?
Mental Health is everything to me. If my mind is not together, then everything is going to reflect that. This has been very evident for me lately. So I’ve just been diving into my selfcare. When my mental state starts to slip, selfcare always grounds me. It reminds me of what really matters.
5. How do you balance all of your various creative ventures?
Honestly, finding balance in my creative ventures is something I’m always working on. At every level, I feel like I’ve been tested on this in some way. I have the habit of overestimating myself (a blessing and a curse). Sometimes, I can add more to my plate than I can handle. I’ve been feeling extremely overwhelmed with my schedule lately. So much so that my anxiety has been coming in heavy. However, these past couple of days have given me a chance to slow down and rest. I’ve been getting back into my morning routine and movement to restore the balance. Meditation, a planner, and affirmations have been helping me as well. What is necessary is discernment and a sense of self, because you don’t need to say yes to everything.
6. How do you protect your peace of mind when receiving critiques?
Intention is everything when I am creating. The “Why?”. That is what always grounds me to my truth within a work. I am open to constructive criticism, because that helps me grow. When the noise gets too loud, I always go back to my “Why?”. My intention. Because that’s all that matters.
7. What are some of your upcoming goals or things we should look out for?
On Sunday, December 4th, I am hosting a Free Family Portrait Day for my project The Shadows Whispered Secrets. The portraits will be shot by Kendall Bessent. We are offering free photos for families (blood, blended, and chosen)! You can book your portrait session at the link below:
8. Where can people follow and contact you?
Instagram: @kerri.meawayy and @houseofproductions
Youtube: House of Productions