Today, a dream-like work by child prodigy artist Akiane Kramarik. The work captures a moment in time that cannot be pinpointed, a common characteristic of her work. The artist was gifted with innate technical skill which she hones continually by spending hours every day sketching and painting.

Child Prodigy Akiane Kramarik Centers Her Art Practice on Love & Hope

Akiane Kramarik in her studio.

Art Akiane represents the work of gallery owner/artist Akiane Kramarik, a child art prodigy from Mount Morris, Illinois, who has appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show and other television shows to talk about her realistic paintings and poetry. Her first painting was sold for $10,000 when she was only eight. Akiane, now twenty-nine years old, continues to write and paint and spoke to Incollect about what inspires and motivates her. 

By Benjamin Genocchio   

In 2003, at the age of 8, Akiane painted the intricately rendered portrait Prince of Peace, a 3x4-foot work that was bigger than she was. It was purchased for $850,000  by its current owners and is now on display along with other works by Akiane at Belóved Gallery in the Texas Hill Country.

When did you become an artist?

My journey as an artist began around the age of four when I was inspired by a deep connection to my visions, dreams, and real-life experiences. With the support of my family, I embraced painting as a means of expressing the beauty and mystery of the world. At six, I started experimenting with colors, which became my artistic foundation later in life.

How were you and your work initially received, being so young?

I had my first solo show when I was nine years old. In the beginning, in all truth, showcasing my artwork was met with challenges and criticism. At many local exhibitions I participated in, when I was starting out, visitors often showed little interest in my artwork. But I remained undiscouraged. In 2019, Prince of Peace, one of my works, sold for $850,000. 

You first gained attention for your poetry?

I began writing poetry at seven years old. At eight, the media shared my poetry and the story of my childhood and family — we experienced extreme poverty and illness — which led to a great many invitations to appear on television shows, including the Oprah Winfrey Show. At ten, I published my first book, Akiane: Her Life, Her Art, Her Poetry, and my second book, My Dream Is Bigger Than I, was published at age eleven.

Following the time-honored tradition of artists painting a self-portrait posed at their easel, Akiane depicts herself with a traditional old masters-style wooden palette, paint-crusted brush, and wearing folkloric dress as a nod to her mother’s Lithuanian heritage.

What motivates you to paint? 

Through my painting I've discovered a profound sense of life’s purpose and a connection that transcends language, inspiring, I hope, positive change in the world. Over the years, I've supported over two hundred charities worldwide, published books, traveled to 34 countries, and created nearly 300 works of art. Even now, I continue to wake up at 4 am daily to paint and produce short films about my art. These films serve as a conduit for my philosophy, centered on hope and love.

Creation, a work that has decidedly cosmic and spiritual overtones, shows Akiane’s fluidity with non-representational subject matter.

Dharma by Akiane Kramarik is an exceptional painting. This work has it all - a dramatic landscape replete with reflections on water, misty mountains, great depth, plus a tender and emotionally powerful portrait, and a rich and luscious color palette, all rendered in remarkable detail and beautifully composed.

A hyperreal painting, Young Sage is a work of remarkable skill with meticulously detailed textures. 

How would you describe your painting style?

My painting style is a fusion of various influences, which I've termed "Akianism." It encompasses elements of hyperrealism, impressionism, baroque, contemporary art, and surrealism.

Is there a specific medium or technique you use, and how do you paint?

My practice has diversified across a myriad of genres, styles, and media. It spans from hyperreal large-scale acrylic or oil compositions to more fluid, almost abstract works that incorporate glass, gold, watercolor, and ink media. I paint on canvas, linen, tile, paper, silk, and wood. I never use projectors or other artificial measuring tools for the compositions, preferring to adjust balance, proportion, and perspective by the eye only. One thing that is a bit unusual is that I keep my brushes in water and never dry or clean them. They are purposefully altered, and damaged in this way to achieve a specific texture when painting.  

What inspires you?

I draw inspiration from my travels, meditations, dreams, visions, and serendipitous encounters. Paintings incorporate real models, true biographies, as well as my own visionary experiences.    

Elsewhere,  by Akiane Kramarik. 

Color is important in your painting. Can you tell us how you choose your colors?

The colors I choose are often predetermined, each carrying its own emotional story and meaning. I intentionally select specific colors to evoke particular emotions or themes, weaving together the intricate tapestry of the painting's narrative. Even after 20 years of painting, it remains impossible to replicate any brushstrokes or mixed hues exactly. This is why art is a living miracle.

What inspired you to take on painting Jesus as a subject? 

For many years, a blurry image of Jesus appeared to me in my dreams and visions. It wasn't until a mysterious carpenter came knocking on our door one afternoon when I was eight, that I knew it was the right time to paint Jesus.

In the painting Triumph, the artist makes use of vibrant contrasts in color to express emotion.

What other subjects do you like to paint? 

I paint a diverse array of subjects, ranging from animals and portraits to landscapes, the cosmos, soul-scapes, dreams, and visionary colors and shapes. I believe in breaking free from limitations and embracing the boundless possibilities of artistic expression. For me, inspiration isn't something I wait for; it's something that awaits me.

What does a day look like in the studio for you? 

I spend long stretches working daily in my studio, painting early, before dawn, and sketching in the afternoon, refining my ideas and concepts. I document my creative journey by filming it, meticulously capturing every step of my process, from the initial stroke to the final signature. This meticulous filming not only tracks the evolution of my artwork but also offers a visual narrative, sharing insights into my artistic process and philosophy.

How do you title your paintings? 

The process of titling my paintings is deeply personal and varies with each artwork. Some titles are conceived before I begin painting; others emerge over time, sometimes months or even years after the completion of the work. Regardless of the timing, each title holds a story within itself, reflecting the essence and narrative of the painting. My aim is to imbue every title with meaning and timelessness. 

Who are some of the collectors of these paintings? 

My prints and originals have been collected and exhibited in art galleries, museums, embassies, and private institutions around the world, and have been collected as well by world leaders, CEOs, and numerous celebrities.

Which historical artists do you admire?

I admire historical artists like Hayao Miyazaki for his ingenious, timeless creativity. His work beautifully blends childhood innocence with themes of bravery, imagination, and life morals and values, resonating with audiences of all ages. Additionally, artists like Pierre Auguste Cot and Alexandre Cabanel captivate me with their ability to tell stories through exquisite figurative paintings. Their mastery of their craft draws viewers into rich narratives.

Do you work with architects and interior designers on decorative projects, placing your work in buildings? 

Yes, I have! Currently, my prints and originals are displayed in various public and private buildings through collectors of my work. I've had the privilege of collaborating with architects and interior designers on decorative projects, such as my recent endeavor with the Beloved Gallery in Marble Falls, Texas. It was an honor to contribute to the construction process and offer my creative input.

How did Art Akiane, your art gallery, come about? 

Art Akiane emerged during the genesis of my art career, as my parents recognized the significance of nurturing, promoting, and sharing my works with the world. The online, virtual gallery,, has been visited by over a billion people worldwide since 2003.

Discover More From Art Akiane LLC/Akiane Gallery on Incollect