New Feature Exhibition in October September 10 2022
Roses Are Not Always Red
October 8 - 29, 2022
Opening Reception: Saturday, October 8, 4-7 PM
Artist Talk: Friday, October 28, 11 AM
Karlene McConnell, Wall Flowers, acrylic, 39 x 49 inches
About the Exhibition:
Karlene McConnell is known for her colorful, gestural paintings that use lines and shapes to mimic forms found in nature. For her third solo exhibition at Arts on Douglas, McConnell’s subject matter has shifted from sweeping landscapes to intimate still life renditions of roses. These larger-than-life compositions are full of energy and expressive colors that evoke a range of emotions and moods.
In her artist statement, Karlene explains, “In the spring of 2021, after many years of painting abstract landscapes, I painted an arrangement of red roses as an homage to my mother, who had recently passed. One painting led to another and soon my studio was filled with these tributes. This departure from the flat geometric planes of my landscapes to the organic forms of flowers intrigued me.”
Through this work, McConnell also explores the many meanings imbued in roses. She continues,“ The rose paintings were part of my healing process as I examined the range of emotions that they represented, from sorrow to celebration.” Each painting further evokes a mix of feelings and memories for Karlene. She elaborates, “Paintings such as Soft Memories and Finding Hope, speak towards more inward sentiments, while Wall Flowers and Grandma’s House examine more familiar, functional stories.”
As a whole, many influences come together in this robust body of work, and this ongoing series has proven to be both a cathartic process for the artist, and a vessel for sharing the joy and beauty of roses with others through her paintings.
Image 1: Karlene McConnell, Finding Hope, acrylic, 40 x 30 inches
Image 2: Karlene McConnell, Grandma's House acrylic, 48 x 36 inches
About the Artist:
Karlene McConnell is an American artist living in Florida. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art Education from the University of Central Florida in 1983. She is a former Special Education Art teacher and Museum Curator. Her work has been exhibited in solo and group shows from New England to the Miami art fairs. Her art is included in several corporate and private collections including Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, NY and the permanent Lemerand Collection at Daytona State College, FL.