Karen Sjoholm

An essential portion of any artist’s labor is not creation so much as invocation. Part of the work cannot be made, it must be received.
~Lewis Hyde, The Gift: Imagination and the Erotic Life of Property

My work addresses both personal and collective transformation. I believe strongly, through personal experience, that art has the ability to engage us in a dialogue with life energy. It is a form of deep listening and deep response. and in this relationship we are asked to find a faith to follow wherever we are asked to go. In my own work, as an artist and as a teacher, the importance of the process of creation is balanced equally with concern about the integrity of formal aspects of a work. Conscious engagement with the creative process is an acknowledgment of the preciousness of the moment. When that process is embodied in the physical world an image is created that can be returned to by both the artist and the viewer again and again. That returning becomes a homecoming - a recognition that when the work of an artist touches us we are receiving a gift from something greater than ourselves.
I am finding fewer and fewer words to describe the process of my artwork. I know that I am able, sometimes, to follow an inner guidance that trusts the unfolding of vision and that seeks the materials and form that will most precisely mirror that vision. I experience life between the poles of lyrical beauty and heart breaking harshness. My art negotiates this
territory and becomes, for myself, a trace of presence and a connection to the greater creative energies that are continually supporting and destroying the world as we know it.
Karen Sjoholm