Raised in Cranston, Rhode Island, Karen Roarke graduated from Boston College, where she majored in Studio Art. In 1988, she earned a Master of Art degree in Drawing & Painting from California State University, Fullerton. Continuing her studies at The Claremont Graduate University, Roarke received the Emily Ann Horowitz Fellowship and was awarded a Master of Fine Art degree in January 1990. She currently works out of her Middletown, Rhode Island, studio and serves as Director of the Hunter Gallery in the Drury Grosvenor Center for the Arts at St. George’s School.
I observe the world around me – both interior and exterior spaces.
I engage in non-representational painting because I am attracted to color, light, transparency and pattern. Encountered in my surroundings, these elements are inherent in the plastic properties of acrylic paint.
I pay attention to the positive and negative spaces and how light interacts and color energizes. Referencing these noticed details instead of pictorially depicting them, I use them as a springboard to explore through my work.
Here are a few examples of her work.