Artist Spotlight Series: AK Hardeman

I am smitten with my latest Artist Spotlight Series feature.

Her work is passionate and punctuated with color. I am particularly fond of the mesmerizing new pieces with the dark backgrounds. 

Enjoy getting to know the talented

AK Hardeman

Birmingham, Alabama

What is your training?

I do not have any professional training outside of art classes growing up and in high school.  I was lucky to be able to attend schools that helped me develop my art. My biggest influence was my high school AP Studio Art instructor. She really pushed me and helped me gain the confidence I needed.  I received my first commission my senior year of high school.  

I went on to study Art History in College and at Goldsmiths College in London, but I continued to paint and create along the way. 

 What inspires you and your designs? 

I try to live a creative life as much as possible in all areas of my life, what I watch, read, wear, relationships, and how I decorate my home.  I surround myself with things that will help me learn new things and create new ideas, all of which influence my art.  I love fashion, art and interior design books.  Colors and patterns in both fashion and interiors are a great influence. Art books and art museums are also an influence as far as expanding my perspective and ideas.  

What is your favorite piece? 

It is hard to choose a favorite, but I recently completed a commission for a triptych of three 48 x 48 inch pieces.  The background is a deep blue, almost black, with bright colors composed of mixed media elements composing the rest of the piece.  

How has the your area influenced your work?

There are a lot of very creative people in Birmingham; designers, artists, musicians, tastemakers, architects and furniture makers.  I have been lucky enough to call some of them friends and they continue to inspire and encourage me.  

What is your favorite restaurant in Birmingham?

It is a tie between Bottega and Highlands Bar and Grill, both owned by the amazing Chef Frank Stitt  

 What is your favorite cocktail?

I am a Champagne drinker!  I do like a good Old Fashioned though! 

 How do you balance personal life and work?

I don’t!  My studio is in my home, which is a blessing and a curse.  

 Dream trip?

A trip anywhere right now would make me happy!  I have always wanted to go to Greece.

 Dream commission?

I would love to paint something HUGE!  Like 12 feet tall and 10 feet wide…or larger. 


 Your favorite host / hostess gift to give?


Who is your style icon?

I love fashion, but I would not really say I have an icon.  I like what I like and try to stick to that motto!  I do love Iris Apfel

and Blair Eadie of Atlantic – Pacific. 


Your favorite up and coming artist?

Hayden Gregg from Atlanta.  I recently commissioned him to create a watercolor rendering of a ladies lounge in my fantasy English country estate.  He creates beautiful renderings, murals, and even paints furniture.  He is a great person and very talented! 


What is your most treasured possession?

A large mirror that was once in home of my great-grandparents.  


What are you reading?

I have been “reading” the same books for four months.  I did just get “Seven Days in the Art World” by Sarah Thornton and I am excited to read that!  

 What are you listening to?

I always have music going!  Music has always been very important to me in my art and my life. I primarily listen to Indie Folk, Folk Rock, and Americana.  Recently, I have been listening to a lot of Bon Iver.  

What are your favorite blogs / publications?

Vanity Fair, Air Mail Weekly, MILIEU, ELLE Decor, Town & Country, and Veranda


Take a look at AK’s amazing pieces available through Design Supply.



and more from Well + Wonder

Be sure to follow AK on her website and Instagram. A few of my favorites there…

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