Karen Anne Baldauski
Above: EDGE OF THE SEA, 2019, 24hx36w, acrylic on stretched canvas
"Spring Lambs", 24x36, acrylic on stretched canvas
FELTED WOOL WALL HANGINGS...click on the Menu to see more examples of Karen's distinguiished felted wool work.
FOX, at left, is one of two of Karen's felted wool wall hangings juried into "Expressions", the 2019 Marin Society of Artists National Open Fine Arts Juried Exhibition in San Rafael, California. The juror was Paul Kratter.
Karen comments: "I switch media as a change of pace. Working with gorgeous wools and lots of soapy water in the felting process, and being outdoors to fashion the wall hangings on a large work table, is a joyfull experience. When a piece is finished and rinsed and hung to dry in the wind, I feel happy. I make sturdy felt that is easy to hang like a tapestry from a rod."
Karen has mastered and developed wet-felting techniques to create works that stand out as masterpieces for the delicacy of effects she alone can achieve, not by needle-felting, but by WET-felting. Oftentimes her professional skills working as a graphic designer are shown off in simplified compositions that are truly unique and contemporary in look.
Karen comments: "Sometimes I wash a raw, recently sheared fleece and dry it outdoors before I card it to use in my work. I can choose to work with natural fleece colors or dye the wool specific to a design. I can make felted wall hangings to be very durable to last for centuries with appropriate simple care.
For the FOX shown above I trimmed the edge to be really straight. It hangs beautifully. Some people prefer the effect of the natural waviness of an untrimmed edge that takes its shape from the hand processing I do in layering wools as I build up the thickness of a good felt. Sometimes I make the most delicate felt of all when I combine the most luxurious wools with silk to fashion scarves and wraps which are lightweight and magical, to be worn as an everyday accessory or to be used for a very very special occasion! Some of my biggest shawls are just glorious one of a kind pieces that make my heart sing as I see them flying in the wind on the clothesline to dry. Sometimes when I meet a lady at the gallery, she will ask me to try to create a shawl like one she admires but she would prefer a different color. I can try to do that and am happy to consider requests like those."