Contemporary Painter

Studio Blog Posts

Studio Blog which includes news, paintings in progress, personal statements, and any other updates about Karen Silve.

Posts tagged abstract painting

I went through my storage and found this gem from my cellist painting days. The title is "Relativity", and is 60" x 48" painted in 2006. At the time I was working with the idea of multiple sounds of the cellists working in harmony. So I started painting two cellists on one canvas. When I hung it up yesterday for a client to see, I found it interesting that I am now putting two trees together in my current work. I enjoy seeing how the abstracted trees in my paintings, as well as the physical trees that inspired me, relate to one another. The relationship of subjects working together may be a recurring theme in my work.

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The Mexican Market Place

In 2010, I went to Mexico for the first time. I booked a room at La Paloma in Ajijic. Some friends of mine were looking to retire there, and were staying at the same Bed and Breakfast.

I almost didn't book the flight, because I was scared I would be bored. I knew I needed a vacation, but all of my previous vacations have been packed full with attending cultural events, visiting museums, and looking at contemporary art at the local galleries from the, usually, metropolitan cities. But this trip, I was traveling by myself to a very small village in Mexico and I didn't speak any Spanish. The B&B was owned by American's, so I felt like they could at least point me in the right direction. But my fear was that there would be nothing to do, and I would only sit by the pool. I don't like going to the beach. I don't like swimming. And I don't like sitting in the sun. With skin cancer in my family, I generally try to stay out of the sun. What if I just couldn't stand it. A claustrophobic fear came about. I decided to try and conquer that fear.

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Morning Glow

Recently, while riding my bike in the morning, vivid emotions and memories flooded over me. Memories from my painting days in Provence, France. Every morning, I would wake up early and start my walk to the studio. I listened to the hustle and bustle of traffic: honking cars, screeching brakes, swishing of buses lowering and rising. The world started its day. The smells are what I remember most; the mixture of diesel with the sweet scents of jasmine and juniper as well as roses and other floral scents. As I got closer to the studio, the sounds became more faint and the sweet smells became more vivid. I would become very excited. Would I find myself in the fields looking at Mt. St. Victoire or country homes, or walk amongst flower fields that I would decide I had to stop and paint. Finally, I would make it to the studio and the aromas switched to herbaceous tones of thyme, rosemary and sage mixed with oil mediums and paints. I always had a cup of rosemary tea made with a large fresh cut sprig steeped in hot water. This I loved. It was so beautiful and kept my mind free and vibrant. Then, my art day would begin. After finding the place to paint, I would get lost in my surroundings; transcending from a practical place to an emotional and instinctive one. By the end of the day I would have completed a painting. Another day in my journal of art.

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Sacred Places — statement by Karen Silve

These new paintings are a meditation about special places I visited during hikes around Mt. Hood and the Columbia Gorge. I contemplated over some of the untouched and intimate spaces realizing they are a part of a bigger picture; a part of evolution and mother nature at her best. I think it is the unknown that I am so inspired by; the awe of nature from something so ancient to something so current. I am fascinated with the hidden places where microorganisms, insects and animals are born, and how they are dependent on these delicate combination of conditions. There’s a quiet beauty which exists amongst the sounds of water falling, leaves rustling, birds chirping, and unseen creatures moving about. These special places have a spiritual aura that has mesmerized me.

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