Karen Kunc

Karen Kunc (b. 1952)

“I am interested in evocative inferences about how we have come to live with nature—the shaping of landscape, cultivation and destruction activities, wild and domestic nature, shelters, markers, spaces, natural and evolved forms—icons that come from living with, and against, nature.” A great deal of Karen Kunc’s inspiration comes from the Nebraska landscape, but the resulting images are combinations of multiple shapes and colors that suggest, rather than identify, the disparate natural forms that served as their models. Although the artist’s primary medium is woodcut, her methods are not entirely traditional to that field. Her prints contain a significant number of intense colors, which she produces with an uncharacteristically small number of woodcuts. She achieves this end by attaching stencils to a particular block of wood—a method borrowed from screenprinting. These artistic and technical innovations have distinguished Kunc from other artists working in the woodcut medium. Kunc’s work has been featured in several publications on printmaking. Her prints are contained in the collections of numerous major museums worldwide including the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Smithsonian in Washington D.C., and the Victoria-Albert Museum in London. She is currently on the faculty of the department of art and art history at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

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