MUNTHE ART MONDAY: KAREN LEDERER
Please introduce yourself and tell us about what you do.
I’m a Brooklyn-based artist who incorporates printmaking techniques into painting. Some elements of my work are graphic and flat while others are highly rendered and painterly. I’m currently working towards a solo show that opens at Morgan Lehman Gallery in New York on September 8th. My recent paintings explore themes of motherhood, curation, and artistic influence. The scenes I depict feel of this world yet separate, simulating our current existence of living in the physical world and online.
Could you explain more about how being a woman has affected your career?
It’s hard to say how my career would be different if I wasn’t a woman. I’ve been fortunate to work with some great people in the artworld and have gotten to show with really fantastic artists. I did recently become a mother which means that I’m balancing way more than I did before. Studio time is more limited but also more intentional. When I’m working on my art, I’m really focused. I feel I’m making the best paintings I’ve ever made because the time away from my studio allows me to see them with fresh eyes and make more considered decisions.
Can you name some other female artists that inspire you and explain why they do so?
There are so many female artists that inspire me! I love the textile designs of Maija Isola. I look at her patterns for Marimekko a lot, and they definitely influence the patterns and color stories of my own paintings. I admire the work of Polly Apfelbaum. It is bursting with color, and I like that she explores so many mediums like ceramics, textiles, and printmaking. I’m currently really taken by the work of Mary Cassatt. Her depictions of mother and child have been resonating with me lately as I try to explore similar themes in my own work. Her prints are so tender and sensitive, while also feeling nuanced.
What has been the most challenging aspect of being a female artist?
I feel that male artists have the freedom to paint still-life subject matter like flowers and the artworld finds it edgy. When women paint the same subjects, the work can get pigeon-holed as “feminine” and taken less seriously.
What would you like people to notice in your artwork?
My paintings often reference one another. I would love for people to see the connections between them and the larger story they tell.