Artist Statement

20" x 18"

Roses on Bleecker Street

 After years of debate my husband has convinced me that the primary colors might be magenta, yellow and cyan. Herewith I present a series of  paintings  using ONLY these three . Of course I use white and black paint to modify the palette;  creating shadows and brightly lighted areas.


Winter Spring

One of my favorite poets, Richard Wilbur, died in October, 2017.  To honor him, I’ve done this painting named after his beautiful poem, Winter Spring:

A script ot trees before the hill
Spells cold, with laden serifs; all the walls
Are battlemented still;
But winter spring is winnowing the air
Of chill and crawl
Wet-sparkling on the gutters;
Walls wince, and there’s the steal of waters.

Now  all this proud royaume
Is Veniced. Through the drift’s mined dome
One sees the rowdy rusted grass,
And we’re amazed as windows stricken bright.  
This too-soon spring will pass
Perhaps tonight,
And doubtless it is dangerous to love
This somersault of seasons;
But I am weary of
The winter way of loving things for reasons. 


Art is, for me, a way of responding to life around me; a link between inner and outer worlds.   With painting, specifically, the hand responds to what is observed and felt. For example, I spent a summer in Provence, painting sunlight as it transformed bouquets of white roses. The images thereby became deeply experienced icons of ephemera. Those paintings still remind me of the luck of having found that place, the routine of showing up every morning and afternoon until light fell in the hour of gloaming.  I then realized the hues and palette of my chosen late day palette, enriched with long blue shadows.

With a broader view, as I look at a subject, whether it is an actual person, place, object or subjective condition, the more I look the more I see. One must learn to see.   As I have learned to absorb these situations while making art, I’ve learned that they can apply to life situations as well as to looking at art made by other persons.  In fact, history is often learned from and created by images telling personal and objective stories.  We, as artists thereby do our part to study and shape the world we inhabit.

And now I wish to dedicate my work to the blissful days and evenings we shared before our sick president intruded upon us.  These paintings of gardens will aspire to the peaceful ambience we shared before this assault on everything we hold dear……  


De Profundis Clamavi Oil on Linen:10″ x 12″


   It has been said that my work has an immediacy and urgent quality. I paint for myself, so the images come about as personal responses to meaningful events in my life. It is my hope that a spirit of commonality will affect those who experience whatever I draw and paint.


Morning at Big Sur

artiste en plein air

Artiste en Plein Air


 Physical rhythm and energy is basic to any visual imagery that attracts me, affecting whatever evolves on my drawing paper or painting. For me, art originates in the viscera, not in the head.

Anything alive is worthy of attention.

To paraphrase Matisse: “All my life, I have been held by the opinion current at the time I first began to paint, when it was permissable to  render observations made from nature.”  

barbara at woodstock

An afternoon at Woodstock

Drawing at Chania, Crete

Drawing at Chania, Crete


On a dit que ma peinture produit un effet d’immédiateté et d’urgence. Je ne peins pour personne d’autre que moi-même, ainsi mes images ne se forment qu’à partir de souvenirs personnels et d’évènements signifiants de ma propre vie. Mais, bien sûr, j’espère qu’une semblance d’universalité sera ressentie par les personnes qui seront en présence de mes dessins et peintures.

Tout ce qui est vivant mérite notre attention. La nature et les couleurs changeantes des saisons sont primordiales pour moi… sans oublier la nature humaine.

Lorsqu’avec le XXème siècle émergèrent de nouvelles définitions de l’art, le didactisme et les présages de désastres remplacèrent la beauté. L’esthétique se trouva dissociée des formes idéales de la beauté. On peut paraphraser Rilke, le poète: “La beauté n’est que le commencement de la terreur.”

Je ne peints qu’à la lumière naturelle, la plus belle étant tôt le matin et à l’heure du crépuscule, lorsque les ombres s’approfondissent de bleu et de violet. Il m’est arrivé de passer tout un été en Provence à peintre les roses blanches de mon jardin… Ce n’était pas les roses que je peinais mais la lumière changeante qui les transformait en sujet d’extase. 

Electra's Birthday Bouquet

Electra’s Birthday Bouquet





see also: Barbarakerstetterart at