Karen Grosman studies different cultures to bring diverse viewpoints to her 2 and 3D artwork. She is currently referencing A Dictionary of Symbols by J.E. Cirlot, The Complete Language of Flowers by S. Theresa Dietz, and The Secret Language of Symbols by David Fontana for the meanings of different images in order to explore impermanence and bring narrative to her paintings.
Working with images such as birds, insects, butterflies, and shells, Karen Grosman's oil and metal leaf paintings incorporate new ideas and perspectives. Her collection, Decorated Impermanence; Contemporary Vanitas, uses a mix of symbols and meanings from different cultures to create narrative. In Grosman's paintings, the owl, nightjar, and moth are considered signs of death while the cardinal is a deceased loved one visiting. Her use of gold leaf depicts wealth and what will be left behind (memento mori) and her reference to insects often represents decay. Flowers represent life and the butterfly expresses the fragility of it.
Although her 2 and 3D artwork has different concepts, they influence and inspire Grosman with the creative freedom she needs while working in her studio. Her hand built ceramic collection, Adorned/Abject, explores superficiality, hidden meanings, and the façade. She is interested in combining highly decorated objects with abject elements. The fragility of clay is an important element to the artwork, emulating the fragility of the society constructs they are inspired by.
Grosman (b. 1988) is a Canadian artist based in Toronto. She received her BFA from OCAD University. Notable exhibitions include Memento Mori - Decorated Impermanence at Cedar Ridge Creative Centre (2023), Fragments at the Institute of Miniature Art (2021). Her ceramics were represented by Coastal Eddy Gallery, Laguna Beach, California (2022). Her solo exhibition Feminism UTSC at Gallery 1265 was part of the UFT Feminist Conference (2015) and the group exhibition Birth and its Meaning at Milk Glass Gallery was part of the Ryerson University Midwifery Conference (Toronto Metropolitan University) 2017.
View Karen's artwork in the 2023 exhibit Chuffed Up!