Karen Barbour is a prolific painter and a devoted keeper of sketchbooks filled with the thoughts, observations and drawings she utilizes for reference. Her process leads her to work on many pieces simultaneously, visiting them and revisiting them as they call to her. She is inspired by ongoing dreams and memories, both old and new, and the recollections play out on the paper and canvases like a narrative of her subconscious. The imagery is a surrealist mix of figures and abstractions, fluidly rendered with skillful combinations of gouache, ink, oil and collage.
Barbour has a BA from the University of California, Davis and an MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute. Her work has been in The New York Times and many other publications, in a set of children’s books, and on an advertising billboards in Japan. She has shown at the Jack Hanley Gallery and Anthony Meier Fine Arts.