We live in a fractured world. Wars, famine and power games are forcing people to abandon their homes and their way of life in hopes of finding peace. For lack of education or specialized skills, the poor are not accepted into our northern communities. They stay in the camps on the borders of turmoil, separated from local community. Animals are caught in the crossfire. Even the trees and the rocks suffer the agony of imbalance. This chaos is evident in my work. In between the rivulets of paint and the textural accidents I choose colours and forms to suggest a landscape where beauty continues to reign. We can still change the tide and build a new world harmony. Certainly, contemporary will focuses on gold instead of beauty. Yet, beauty is essential to the wellbeing of the planet. She is essential to the survival of humanity.
Wandering the world as a child, Karen grew up looking for a place of peace. In Australia she acquired the basics in visual art at Julian Ashton Art School before finishing an Honours French Degree from the University of New South Wales in Sydney. Returning to Canada at the age of twenty-six she chose to add a Professional A Teaching Certificate from the University of Saskatchewan, to her repertoire. She taught junior high for three and a half years before taking on the role of a full-time mother. Never far from the creative world her competencies continued to grow in drawing, oils, watercolours, acrylics and mixed media. These skills she shared through her school, Blanchet Fine Arts, established in 1990 in Bellegarde, Saskatchewan, and transported to each community in which her family took up residence. Pursuing peace on an inward path she took several personal development courses, the final one gifting her with a Mastermind. At this point her ambitions as an artist launched into the professional realm with established studio hours and a growing clientele. Encouraged by her husband and her four children she eventually opened her own gallery, “Inspirations”, adjoining her working studio in what is now her permanent home, Edmonton, Alberta. In 2012 her growing reputation landed her a place as one of two artists to represent Alberta in the Contact Ouest held in Whitehorse, Yukon. The other honoured artist was Patricia Lortie. During their shared time they discussed the possibility of establishing an artist mastermind along the same lines as the one Karen described. Four years later, during the annual symposium hosted by RAFA (Regroupement artistique francophone de l’Alberta), the collective “Devenir” came to be. As a result of combining the talents of five powerful Albertan artists, the Collective Devenir has enjoyed several important successes. Karen revels in the synergy of cooperation and willingness to share the load in their pursuit of professionalism and renown.