Karen Gunderson’s paintings are finely detailed and filled with identifiable imagery. Various elements in the composition are delineated not by color but by textures and their light-capturing properties.
Originally from Wisconsin, Gunderson earned her masters in painting from the University of Iowa, where her artwork was influenced by neurophysiologist Steve Fox’s research into brain forms. In the late 1960s, as a teacher at Cornell College in Mount Vernon, Iowa, she created Plexiglas formations using brain form imagery and, later, clouds, a subject she began to paint using acrylics some years later. She stopped teaching in 1981 at the suggestion of her longtime friend, the abstract expressionist Elaine de Kooning, to devote more time to her art and to raising a family.
Gunderson has a different stylistic approach for each body of work or series of paintings. The waves in
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