Karen Story Featured Artist at March 4th First Friday

Headshot of artist Karen StoryKaren Story is an painter who majored in printmaking and painting at PNCA in Portland, Oregon. She was the recipient of a Louis Bunce Scholarship award, the Printmaking Department scholarship award, and the Local 10 Scholarship award.  She exhibits throughout Oregon and her work is owned by the Portland Art Museum and many private collectors.

This month, Village Frame & Gallery is featuring Karen’s newest show, Shipscapes.


Karen Story Artist’s Statement

Collage of Karen's paintings of the seaI use art to communicate with those around me, as well as with my own inner being. Through arrangement of color, form, content, line, shape, and value I attempt to create a unique experience for the viewer.

This show is especially exciting for me, since the medium is not one I generally use for artistic expression. After I discovered Captain Bob, a rusting 65 year-old ship on the Multnomah Channel (while kayaking), I could think of no other way to capture the beauty of what I saw than through photography. I was stunned as I noticed the ‘landscapes’ which surrounded the ship, at the level of the water, created by years of re-painting, rust, moss, oxidation, and erosion.

Presenting familiar but unusual scenes of lakesides and ocean/land views, the shipsides compelled me to repeatedly visit and photograph them over the following 4 years. I continue to photograph ships during various times of day, season, and weather. The images are evocative of time and place, but with a slight mystery about exactly what one is viewing. These illusions may evoke emotion as well as memory.

Currently an encaustic painter, I use many of the images to inspire paintings in a medium which is also somewhat mysterious, and also asks the viewer to look more deeply into the painting. While assembling this show, I have been able to revisit the initial reactions and excitement brought on by discovering Captain Bob and other rusted ships in Swan Island harbor. It has been my pleasure.

Meet Karen at First Friday

Join us at Village Frame & Gallery for an artist’s reception Friday, March 4, starting at 6:00 pm. We are located in Multnomah Village at 7808 SW Capitol Hwy, Portland, OR 97219. In the meantime, here’s a sneak peak of Shipscapes:

Painting of dark water and land beneath rust streaked sky
Rusty Sky by Karen Story


Encaustic painting of green sea water with stormy sky above
Electric Sky by Karen Story


Encaustic painting with city surrounded by water and rusty sky above
Green City with Rust by Karen Story


Encaustic painting with dark land or water beneath blue sky
Blue Sky by Karen Story

Village Frame & Gallery, 7808 SW Capitol Hwy, Portland, OR 97219 ● (503) 245-8001
Open Tuesday - Friday, 10am - 5pm, and Saturday 10am - 4pm, or by appointment.