Kathy Barry completed her Masters at the Elam School of Fine Arts in 2004 and a Post Graduate Diploma in Art History at Victoria University of Wellington in 2001.

Most recently Kathy was commissioned by the 32nd Bienal de São Paulo to participate in INCERTEZA VIVA/ Live Uncertainty (2016) curated by Jochen Volz, for which she received assistance from the Fundação Bienal de São Paulo and Creative New Zealand. Her commissioned work will be exhibited in the Bienal touring program elsewhere in South America this year.

In 2015 Kathy's work was exhibited at Monash University Museum of Art/MUMA in Melbourne, Believe not every spirit, but try the spirits, curated by Lars Bang Larsen and Marco Pasi; and at Te Uru, Waitakere Contemporary Art Gallery, Auckland - Homeworld: Kathy Barry and Isobel Thom. In 2012 Kathy was the seventeenth McCahon House Artist-in-Residence (French Bay, Auckland), which she followed with a three-month residency at the Vermont Studio Center in the United States. Her work is held in numerous collections including: the Museum of New Zealand, Te Papa Tongarewa, Wellington City Council Art Collection, The Collection of The New Zealand Ministry of Foreign affairs and Trade, and The James Wallace Arts Trust Collection. Kathy is currently working towards an exhibition at Objectspace in Auckland entitled Midway: a Global Books project by John Yau and Kathy Barry.