Kansas Series: Explained / by Karen Matheis



My new series of paintings explore the experience of driving through the unique Kansas landscape. The paintings record retrospection of fields that contain a geography of flat open space. 

Kansas grasslands are vast and create an expansive viewpoint. Trees are not native to the authentic prairie and are prominent in the landscape when they appear. 

The paintings are both calculated and spontaneous. Unifying the overall structure is a mathematical layout. Improvisational gesture lines move through the composition in coordination with design. The lines flow and evoke tranquility.  Playfulness of painting itself occurs when drips and other unplanned parts of construction are included. Transition of perspective angular lines reveal converted simple shapes.  

Putting another layer to the way master painters approached landscape is in keeping with the modern way we take in our environment.  We are no longer static, but are most likely moving as we absorb what we see.