Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Karen Jilly


It is truly an honor to have been selected as a Yuma Arts Symposium presenter. For approximately 30 years, I have been making paintings, drawings, and prints of the contemporary urban landscape.

Being a native of Los Angeles, cityscapes hold a special kind of beauty for me which require embracing all aspects of them: from the gritty to the refined. Within my pieces, I try to portray feelings such as hope, struggle, grace, fragility, and strength, so that my work becomes a metaphor for life and all that it encompasses.
I use the complexity of architectural elements, often in the form of freeway columns, telephone poles, and construction scaffolding, to provide structure and stability.  Barbed wire, hazard signs, and traffic cones depict ideas of strife and despair, while exaggerated perspectives create psychological tension.  In contrast to the darker elements, the use of backlighting represents hope and dreams. While all of my works are devoid of human figures, many contain house or roof shapes that symbolize a life within the landscape.


Home, Mixed Media with Varnish on Paper, 48 x 72 inches, 2015



City of Angels V, Charcoal on Paper, 38 x 52 inches, 1991


Pacific Coast Highway V, Oil on Paper, 30 x 42 inches, 1991




Watch, Trip, Crash, Soar, Oil on Wood Panel, 72 x 96 inches, 2005


In addition to an overview of selected images from my career, my presentation will feature a time-lapse sequence covering the six-month evolution of my painting entitled Nest, from its inception to its completion. 

The series of images will encompass the good, the bad, the ugly, the cussing, the distress, the obliteration, and the final rectification.  This sneak peek into my mindset while working, will also cover some of my influences, as well as a couple of cool tricks that I use to draw perspective.



Nest, Acrylic on Wood Panel, 48 x 48 inches, 2018


In 2001, Master Printer (and past Yuma Arts Presenter!), John Armstrong, introduced me to the Dremel Tool as an etching drill for use on monoprint plates.  I began transferring this activity to other surfaces.





I will conclude my presentation with a Dremel Tool demonstration, not only as a technique for etching printmaking plates, but also as a drawing device, both additive and subtractive.  The below images all contain different examples of Dremel tool use.



Footnote, Power Tool engraved Monoprint, image 21 x 13 ½ inches on 30 x 22 paper, 2002



On The Drive II, 15 x 10 inches, 2001



Misfit, Mixed Media on Paper, 33 x 60 inches, 2003




See more information on Karen Jilly  HERE

See more information on Yuma Art Symposium  HERE 






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