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Karen Deans

Karen Deans Art and Design

"Of the many ways I engage in creative expression—including graphic design, illustration and writing—painting has always been my artistic touchstone. It’s a practice that pushes me into new imaginative territory and deepens my understanding of who I am as an artist. The process of working with pigment, oil, panel, and brush helps me unearth mysteries from within myself, as I bring them to light in a visual, visceral way. I am ever grateful for the privilege to share what I create with others and to connect around something that brings me great joy."

Karen Deans was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia, where an early love of art and the richly textured images of the American South led to a life-long interest in painting. After studying art history in Paris, she lived for four years in Tokyo, traveled parts of East Asia, and acquired a taste for varied Asian art forms, including Japanese pottery and woodblock printing and Chinese painting and textiles. She incorporates these and other influences, along with inspiring images from nature, in her original designs.

Karen paints in oil on panel, often using cold wax medium to add layers of texture. She draws inspiration from vintage textiles, contemporary design, and patterns in nature. Each Wooden Tile is created in her studio, where an archival pigment print of an original oil painting is mounted onto a cradled birch frame 2" deep. The sides of each frame are hand painted, and each tile is finished with an archival varnish, then signed and numbered in limited runs.

Karen earned an art history degree from the American University in Paris, where she studied turn-of-the-century European painters, such as Edouard Vuillard, Pierre Bonnard, Felix Vallotton, and their treatment of art in home design. She later studied painting and drawing at the Corcoran College of Art and Design in Washington, D.C. Karen has worked as an illustrator, graphic designer, writer, and scenic painter for the theater. Currently she lives in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.

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Selected Exhibitions & Awards
New York Gift Fair - Handmade, Jacob Javits Center, New York NY, 2006-2009
Buyers Market of American Craft, PA Convention Center, Philadelphia PA, 2006-2009
Various Group Exhibitions, Studio Gallery, Washington DC, 2004-2006