Karen Muntean - Artist

Here are a couple photos of my paintings from the Arabesque, Energia and Harmonics series in the Leon Frazer offices in Toronto.  They are there until September 2018.

In 2018 I've been going a slightly different direction, away from the hard-edged abstractions of 2017.  I started by pouring on color, collaging Japanese origami papers and gel transfers of my photographs,  using tar gel for texture.  Then veiling the result in either black or white, wiping away this layer to expose the strong colour beneath.  Here are a couple photographs of works in progress and details of the finished pieces, "Chiyogami"  and "Tenerife" on my website in the Origami series. 






Here are a few photos from Todos los Colores, Hazel Harris and my two-person show at Cedar Hill Rec Center main gallery.  The show runs through October 1, 2017.


Hazel Harris and I are excited to be showing our work together this fall at Cedar Hill Rec Main Gallery in Saanich.  


We hired Kate Cino to help us with publicity and she created a web page that talks about our work for this show.  This can be accessed at 




We are grateful for her expert help.


I came across another quote that I feel expresses my sentiments about my work for this show....and maybe my work in general:


"I make things that are not serious, but I do it very seriously."  Alexis Poliakoff

In the context of an art review in the New Yorker, Peter Scheldahl says


"Art often serves us by exposing conflicts among our values, not to propose solutions but to tap energies of truth, however partial, and beauty, however fugitive;  and the service is greatest when our worlds feel most in crisis."

I've just posted to the web site six images from my new series based on cut-paper maquettes, mentioned in this blog post previously.  I decided to call them "Harmonics" after reading this quote from John Elderfield in his book, "the Cut-Outs of Henri Matisse":


"the reassertion of harmony and the healing of alienation is a basic theme of Matisse's art."


I am of course not Matisse but I could hope these images head in that direction anyway.

The "new painting at last for 2016", after further reflection, has morphed into "Birds & Bees Arabesque" in 2017.  Hopefully it is now finished.....I like it better anyway.  


I was having trouble getting started after producing very little in 2016.  In thumbing through art books and catalogs, I came upon photos of Matisse in his old age (my age) doing his cut-paper works.  So I decided to give that a try.  I painted up a bunch of sheets of paper with acrylics, using an ancient Egyptian palette.  By cutting and gluing I created four maquettes that I could work from to make some 20" x 30" paintings.

I heavily textured the surface of the canvases and panels I intended to work on, with spackle and pumic gel, sanding them down when dry with a belt sander.


I have done these four panels and am now working on a 30" x 30", with ambitions for a 30" x 60".

The method is certainly not original and the resulting images aren't profound, but they are really fun and have me looking forward to working again, so for now I'm happy.



my . artist run website