Approved: 16.08.2006

Karen Wallis

Artist, Researcher

Approved: 16.08.2006

Karen Wallis draws and paints the everyday world. She is curious about the role of images and how they are perceived by the viewer, in particular how visual rhetoric influences their perceptions through historical reference, methods of display and curatorial input.

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  • Location: Bath, South West
  • Activities: Practice-based research, Residencies, Private commissions, Publishing, Studio practice
  • Categories: Drawing, Installation, Painting, Research, Sound
  • Tags: sketchbook, observation, phenomenology, figurative, drawing, painting, Artist in residence, research, sound portrait, conversation
 
 

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    Biography

    Karen Wallis draws and paints the everyday world. She is curious about the role of images and how they are perceived by the viewer, in particular how visual rhetoric influences their perceptions through historical reference, methods of display and curatorial input.

    Since 2008 she has been engaged in residency work. Three years with The Holburne Museum, during its closure for redevelopment was followed by further projects that explore the interaction between artist and social environment, including a sound portrait with drawings of Bath Ethnic Minority Senior Citizens at Fairfield House in Bath. Reflection on these residencies is providing the stimulus to push her practice beyond its normal boundaries and to investigate how art can facilitate conversation and recall.

    Currrent work is rooted observational drawing in sketchbooks, which is then developed using any appropriate media to reflect on the situation.  This may include painting, digital media, sound, installation, intervention, or performance. She has also begun to publish books about her projects under the pseudonym of Avis Rara.

    Reading on aesthetics and philosophy informs her practice but the visual element always leads any theoretical input. Her PhD (Painting & Drawing the Nude: a search for a realism of the body through phenomenology & fine art practice - UWE Bristol, 2003) embraced a broad range of art practice in a variety of venues, supported by texts on phenomenology, hermeneutics and alterity.

    Karen lives and works in Bath and is a member of the RWA Artist Network in Bristol. She takes an active interest in provision for visual art in the area. Having been Chair of BANA (Bath Area Network for Artists) from 2003 until 2006, she currently supports Bath Artists' Studios and 44AD artspace.

    CV & Education

    Qualifications and training

    2002 - Practice-based PhD in Fine Art and Aesthetics, University of the West of England, Bristol

    Solo exhibitions 

    2013 - Fairfield House, work made as Artist in Residence, Royal United Hospital, Bath
    2011 - Drawing The Development, The Holburne Museum, Bath
    2011 - Karen Wallis: Views and Observations, Victoria Art Gallery, Bath
    2009 - Karen Wallis - selected & rejected, Bath Artists' Studios Gallery, Bath
    2006 - Painting on TV, Hotbath Gallery, Bath
    2002 - Mixing Paint, Bridport Art Centre
    2002 - Painting & Drawing The Nude, PhD exhibition, UWE, Bristol
    1999 - Now you see me ..., Black Swan Guild, Frome
    1998 - Work arising from research, University of the West of England, Bristol

    Group exhibitions

    2014 - Academician Candidate in 162nd Open Exhibition, Royal West of England Academy, Bristol
    2014 - Inside / Out, Studio53, Salisbury
    2013 - Drawn, The Royal West of England Academy, Bristol
    2013 - 
    Reigning Cats and Dogs, The Royal West of England Academy, Bristol
    2012 - The Holburne Portrait Prize, The Holburne Museum, Bath
    2011 - 159th Autumn Exhibition, Royal West of England Academy, Bristol
    2010 - The Big Draw Self-Portrait Drawing Show, Chapel Row Gallery, Bath
    2010 - The Holburne Portrait Prize, Chapel Row Gallery, Bath
    2008 - A Collector's Cabinet, Bath Royal Literary & Scientific Institution, Bath
    2008 - 156th Autumn Exhibition, Royal West of England Academy, Bristol
    2008 - The Holburne Portrait Prize, Chapel Row Gallery, Bath
    2007 - Open View, BANA (Bath Area Network for Artists), Bath
    2006 - The Three Graces Speak, in Beauty and The Beast, Stourhead, Wiltshire
    2006 - Valued, The Chapel Row Gallery, Bath
    2005 - Open View, BANA (Bath Area Network for Artists), Bath
    2005 - paintvoxbox for Electric Pavilion, Watershed, Bristol
    2004 - eak-art 'at home' in Home, curated by Eshoda Arts, Hotbath Gallery, Bath
    2004 - Naked, RWA, Bristol
    2004 - Royal West of England Open, RWA, Bristol

    2003 - An intervention through drawing, in Belonging to Man, Frome Festival
    2003 - Into the Light - BANA showcase exhibition, Hotbath Gallery, Bath
    2002 - The Female Line, Sherborne House, Dorset
    2001 - House Work, installation in an empty house, Bath Fringe Festival
    2001 - In Theory, collaborative work as 'eak-art', Churchill House, Bath
    1999 - Bedales Art and Design, Art 99, Business Design Centre, London
    1999 - In House Twice, two private houses in Bath, Bath Fringe Festival
    1998 - In House First Time, private house in Bath, Bath Fringe Festival
    1997 - Taunton Drawing Open, Somerset
    1996 - Cheltenham Drawing Open, Gloucestershire
    1995 - Artist as Teacher, Hot Bath Gallery, Bath

    Live/Performance

    2008 - Interactive call and response drawing, Art in Action, Oxford Intervention
    2009 - paintvoxbox Offline, Creative Practice/Creative Research Conference, York St John University
    2007 - paintvoxbox offline tour, Launched at The Holburne Museum of Art, Bath
    2007 - The Three Graces Go Live, eak-art in Bath Fringe Festival, Bath
    2006 - The Three Graces gallery visits, eak-arts critiques of exhibitions 
    2004 - Graceful Moments, eak-art in Bath Fringe Festival, Bath
    2004 - Interventions in a pleasant manner, eak-art at Interdisciplinary Landscapes conference, University College Northampton

    Artist talks

    2011 - Drawing The Holburne Museum of Art, Bath Artists' Studios, Bath
    2007 - Attitude and Perception, Widcombe Studios, Bath & Bradford Art Society, Bradford on Avon
    2006 - Style or Substance?, Widcombe Studios, Bath

    Workshops

    2007 - Arts and Kids schools workshops , Merlin Theatre and Black Swan Arts, Frome, Somerset 2006 - Naked Bodies, The Holburne Museum of Art, Bath

    Residencies

    2013 - RWA Drawing Lab residency, Royal West of England Academy, Bristol
    2012 - EVA project commission for Aune Head Arts, with Bath Ethnic Minority Senior Citizens Association (BEMSCA) at Fairfield House, Bath
    2012 - Ghosts in The Garden, Splash & Ripple and UWE History Dept, The Holburne Museum
    2008 - Drawing The Holburne Museum of Art, The Holburne Museum of Art, Bath

    Projects

    2013 to date - Daily Drawing Journal published on Facebook
    2007 - paintvoxbox offline, various art venues, Bath, Bristol and beyond...
    2006 - paintvoxbox for Beauty and The Beast, Hotbath Gallery with The National Trust, Stourhead, Wiltshire
    2005 - paintvoxbox, for Electric Pavilion at Watershed, Bristol
    2001 - 2011 collaborative interventions in a pleasant manner, eak-art, online at www.eak-art.co.uk

    Educational experience - tertiary

    1996 to 2005 - Visiting Lecturer in Painting, Drawing and Visual Culture, University of the West of England, Bristol

    Site specific

    2006 - Shopping bags, eak-art at South Central, Southgate Shopping Centre, Bath
    2005 - Old (shopping) Bags, eak-art in Bath Fringe Festival, Bath
    2003 - Permission to Picnic, eak-art in Queen Square, Bath

    Publications

    2014 - The Power of The Sea, drawings made during the exhibition at RWA, Bristol
    2012 - A Purpose for Purposelessness? Seeking a role for perceptual drawing in historical research. Published in The Regional Historian journal, UWE, Bristol 

    2012 - Illustrations for Ghosts in The Garden booklet, by Steve Poole for Splash and Ripple
    2011 - Drawing The Development, an account of an Artist's residency at The Holburne Museum