Karen Wallis

Karen Wallis

Artist, Researcher

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images and how they are perceived by the viewer, in particular how visual rhetoric influences their perceptions through historical reference, methods of display and curatorial input.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.

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Location Bath, South West
Activities Practice-based research, Residencies, Private commissions, Publishing, Studio practice
Artforms / type of project Drawing, Installation, Painting, Research, Sound
Tags sketchbook, observation, phenomenology, figurative, drawing, painting, Artist in residence, research, sound portrait, conversation
Website http://www.karenwallis.co.uk