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Mind of the Artist, Part XIX: Karen Cohen

August 9, 2017

Karen Cohen is a chameleon of life and lover of the adventure in change. Her work exemplifies aspects of her life that have remained a constant force of creative spirit and colorful imagery of people, places, and things- imaginary and real. We are happy to induct Karen into our “Mind of the Artist” blog and look forward to seeing what else she can create with her whimsical heart and stable mind and eye in through the camera.

I have had many incarnations in my six decades of life: Transcendental Meditation Instructor, Vegetarian, Darkroom Printer, Postal Worker, Master Gardener, Big Sister Mentor, AmeriCorps Volunteer, Child Advocate, Group Home Parent, Garden Writer, Artist, Art Instructor, Wedding Photographer, Organic Farmer, Retail Manager, Fashion Designer, Art Juror, Blogger, Social Media Pusher, Photojournalist, Yoga Practitioner, Punk Rocker, Residential Planner, Interior Design Assistant, Fine Furniture Vendor; I am positive I will be adding to this list! I love change, get bored with mundane jobs and have deliberately set out to explore as many venues/mediums/ places/cultures as I can in one lifetime.

Through all of my adult years I have kept one constant companion, my camera (my husband comes in close second for 35+ years of companionship).I started with a Pentax Spotmatic 35 mm film camera and now use Nikon 35 mm digital cameras. I also use my cell phone camera and I adore technology and computers. Creativity and spontaneity rule my life.

Born and raised in New Jersey, I moved to Washington, DC three years ago and immediately searched for local art groups. I joined Capitol Hill Art League and enjoy the camaraderie of artistic folks who actively pursue their artistic instincts. Last year my photographs were exhibited in over thirty venues across the country and I have had many solo exhibits, most recently at the Hill Center Galleries on Capitol Hill. Being a professional photographer since 1976, I now enjoy freelancing, portrait photography and exhibiting my fine art photography. My series of photographs called Phantasize are on display at Eno Wine Bar in Georgetown, DC for two months August-September 2017.  I created from photographs mystical imaginary places and people; it was featured in a solo exhibit at the Hill Center earlier this year.

Though color is my mainstay, I am working on a limited edition collection of black and white punk rock photographs from the New York era of Studio 54 and CGBG’s. My published photo-journals called Starry, Starry Night featured stories about The Ramones, Patti Smith, the Talking Heads and other rockers written under my pseudonym: k.b.shoots. This work was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s library archives in 2012 with the Aquarian Weekly Magazines.

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Come to the CHAW gallery and check out, "Artist's Pick," a show representing a collection of the CHAL artist's personal favorites- up for just one more week! And up next in the CHAW Gallery: The CHAW Faculty Show! August 28th- September 29th, with opening reception on September 9th, 5:00-7:30pm. Don't miss this chance to meet the Teaching Artists of CHAW!