Karen Smidth Artist Statement: "THE LANDSCAPE gives me a wonderful excuse to paint. It allows me to travel under the heavenly skies and search for the essential vistas and split seconds of time that will carry me through my next series of paintings. When I arrived in California from Denmark in the mid-1980s I was both mesmerized and taken aback by the vastness of the natural panorama along with its aridness and its wildness. It made me feel homesick for my small, wet Danish land. I refused to fall in love with the west coast of the North American Continent. I did not want to understand its subtle song, warm scent, relentless light, perfect mountains and temperamental coast. In the early 2000s drawing and painting became my daily obsession and with it my senses were opened for what I had not been able to receive. ––My heart broke to this land. My paintings are reactions to the light, color, and shapes that I see in the landscape. I use the landscape as a pattern or skeleton for what my day as a painter brings; my attempt to understand life. Most paintings have their ugly moments. They need to be wiped, sanded and over painted and this process builds their character. Some paintings have strong connections to a specific moment is time, but they all relate to a place of belonging as well as allowing room for the hue of the day."