Karen Schulz

9204 Second Avenue
Silver Spring, MD
20910 US
301-588-0427

karenschulz@rcn.com

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Artist Information for Karen Schulz

My work is first and foremost a careful consideration of formal design elements. I am drawn to the tension created by the simultaneous holding of opposites. Circles and squares, stasis and movement, light and dark, the flat plane and three dimensional space, and most recently the hand drawn line and the sewn seam line; each is needed to highlight the other. It is through a disciplined use of design elements that I find joy in creating compositions that explore ultimately what it means to be human. My love of the hand drawn line is evident in my work as we move closer to its disappearance from the everyday lexicon. While the major impetus for my work grows out of the formalist tradition, I recognize there can be no form without content, no content without form. Typically for me content seems to arise out of form. 

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Juxtaposition 2: High Wire Act

Juxtaposition 2: High Wire Act61"X 43"   Photo by Mark Gulezian/Quicksilver

I have worked in the tradition of piecing to construct my art for the last 40 years.  Hard edges result when sewing pieces of fabric one to the other, side by side.  I was interested in pushing this process to it's spare limits.  What kind of tension results when two disparate visual fields are combined?  Ever the formalist, I am also alert to content as it emerges.  Can a bifurcated field be in dialogue, one half with the other, yielding a composition that can work as a whole?  Is there a space that can hold the discussion in it's entirety?



Justaposition 3: The Way Through

Justaposition 3: The Way Through60" X 43"   Photo by Mark Gulezian/Quicksilver

I have worked in the tradition of piecing to construct my art for the last 40 years.  Hard edges result when sewing pieces of fabric one to the other, side by side.  I was interested in pushing this process to it's spare limits.  What kind of tension results when two disparate visual fields are combined?  Ever the formalist, I am also alert to content as it emerges.  Can a bifurcated field be in dialogue, one half with the other, yielding a composition that can work as a whole?  Is there a space that can hold the discussion in it's entirety?



...and the Skeptic

...and the Skeptic81"h X 76"   Photo by Mark Gulezian/Quicksilver

This piece is the result of a sketch made after a five hour visit to the Art Institute of Chicago.  I was so taken with the sheer breadth of everything I had seen.  I found myself asking, "What are you afraid of?" The answer came back, "Look at what people have done.  You can do anything/"  I decided then and there to embrace the whole of myself, the poet and the skeptic.



5 Circles: A Still Life

5 Circles: A Still Life39" X 61"   Photo by Mark Gulezian/Quicksilver

Still within the formalist tradition, 5 Circles is another exploration of a familiar format, bringing two disparate sides together to work as a whole.  After years of investigating the sketchy spontaneous hand drawn circle it was time to turn my attention to the "perfect" circle and the resulting stillness.



Circus Time 2017: The Year One Circus Ended and Another Began

Circus Time 2017: The Year One Circus Ended and Another Began62" high X 38" wide   Photo by Mark Gulezian/Quicksilver

For me, content arises out of form. Title is self explanatory.