Karen O’Brien


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    Karen O'Brien


    Pastel 55 x 60

    Caffeinated Seattle Style by Karen O'Brien was selected as a Finalist in the August 2019 BoldBrush Painting Competition.




    Pacific Northwest artist Karen O’Brien uses dynamic layers of acrylic and pastel to create vibrant Abstract Expressionist works on paper, panel and canvas. While serving 27 years as an Army Physician, she turned to painting as she sought to develop resilience and healing within herself and those with whom she worked. Her works have been exhibited in numerous national exhibitions to include the Pastel Society of America’s Enduring Brilliance Exhibition and has won awards in Pastel Journal’s Annual Pastel 100 Competition. Karen cites her influences as Hans Hofmann, Claude Monet and J.M.W. Turner.


    “As a contemporary abstract colorist, I have developed a unique layering process to create an interplay of texture, color and form resulting in expressive uplifting work. I paint in acrylic and pastel to capture light and form. My goal is to provide the viewer with an experience that inspires and heals.”



    • Third Place Abstract.  2019 “Pastel 100”.  April 2019 Pastel Journal.
    • Sponsors Award.  Pastel Society of New Mexico National Exhibition.  Sorrel Sky Gallery, Santa Fe, NM.  March 2019.
    • Honorable Mention.  2018 18th International Juried Exhibition.  Southeastern Pastel Society.  Oglethorpe University Museum of Art.  Atlanta, GA.  May 11 – June 24, 2018.
    • Juror's Award.  2018 Northwest Pastel Society 32nd Annual International Open Exhibit, American Art Company, Tacoma, WA 5/5/2018 - 6/16/2018.
    • Honorable Mention “Pastel 100”. Painting featured in April 2018 issue of Pastel Journal.
    • Award of Merit.  2017 Pastel Society of the Southwest National Show, Grapevine TX, October 2017
    • Judges Pick 2017 .  Daily Paintworks.



    Learn More About Karen O'Brien