Karen Kaapcke is a figurative painter from New York. She began painting and drawing while completing her Masters degree in Philosophy. She then studied at the Art Students League in New York City, the Ecole Albert Defois in France, and at the National Academy of Design. She has taught with Parson’s School of Design, the Crosby Street Painting Studio, and currently teaches privately out of her studio. She also runs the Young Urban Artists – a drawing and painting workshop for teens in New York City. Karen has been in many exhibitions and several museum shows. She and her family currently share their time between her home and studio in New York City and in France.
In this episode, Karen talks about her ongoing series of self portraits, why she started this series and how it helps her examine the experience of growing older. There is a certain age at which women – in US culture at least – become almost invisible. This leads us into a conversation about how we view our own bodies and how a quick glance in the mirror can sometimes be surprising. Karen uses portraiture to examine both her own transitions and her family’s. We also discuss memory and how it informs her painting, how she shifts between pieces and lets them play off each other plus a whole lot more.
I mentioned an episode of Radiolab in which they talked about memories and how they are formed: listen here