Karen Berman-Mulligan


My favorite subject is the sea. I first work on site, quickly capturing the energy of the scene with broad brush strokes and complementary colors where the highest points of interest are for me. Bundled in a rain jacket or down coat, wearing latex gloves over winter gloves, you'll see me out in the open, even in winter. Back in my studio, videos and photographs remind me of the experience of being there. I find that the more familiar I am with a place, the more I see it in a new way, allowing new details to be seen. These details become my inspiration. I look for those differences – what has changed? The challenge is to represent the same view in a totally different painting.

Acrylics are my usual medium, but sometimes watercolor on paper is the right material. I am happiest with blues, pinks, yellows, and grays. I use greens in unrealistic places.

The theme of resistance motivated my earlier works. Now, I have entered a softer period, looking more at interdependence, connection, co-existence, and mutual respect. I create movement and energy using lively brush strokes, and relationships between color, shape, and form. Is it realism? Is it abstract? Definitely painterly. I skirt the line. The emotive expression honors how no two waves, rocks, or impressions in sand are alike. Because nature is always in flux, each experience is unique. My hope is that viewers of my paintings will see new and different aspects each time they come back to them.


2017 Lexington Open Studios
2016 Bedford Arts & Crafts Society – won First Place in Juried show
2016 Grace Chapel Lexington – Juried Show “Be Still”
2016 Cambridge Art Association – Mary Schein Show
2016 Grace Chapel Lexington – Juried Show “Collaborations”
2016 Kitchen on the Common restaurant – solo show
2016 Topsfield Library group show – juried
2016 Tufts Health Plan Administration, Watertown, Ma – solo show
2015 Grace Chapel Lexington – Juried Show – 'eats/shoots/leaves'.
2015 Cary Memorial Library group exhibit – juried
2014 Grace Chapel Lexington – Juried Show – “untitled”
2014 Grace Chapel Lexington – Juried Show “Noah's Ark”
2012 Cary Memorial Library solo exhibit – juried
2010 Cambridge Art Association Blue Show – University Place – juried
2010 Lexington Open Studios
2009 Grace Chapel, Lexington – juried show
2009 DeCordova Museum student show
2009 Lexington Open Studios
2009 Lexington Arts and Crafts Society Painter's Show
2008 Brookline Bank – Lexington Ma solo exhibit
2008 Lexington Arts and Crafts Society Painter's Show
2007 Lexington Arts and Crafts Society Painter's Show
2006 Lexington Arts and Crafts Society Painter's Show
2005 Eclectic Treasures Medway, MA – juried
2005 Newton Open Studios
2004 Newton Open Studios
2003 Newton Open Studios
2002–2007 Sign of the Dove Artist's Co-op – juried
2002–2010 Pet portraits on commission
2002 Newton Open Studios
2001 Bodhi Cafe Newbury St. Boston solo exhibit
2000 Parish Center for the Arts


DeCordova Museum School 2000 – 2010 various studio classes
Massachusetts College of Art
Museum School at the Museum of Fine Arts Boston
Newport Art Museum, Newport, RI

Boston University BA – Math, Computer Science 1980
University of Michigan



updated December 26, 2017
Copyright 2011-2017 Karen Berman-Mulligan, All Rights Reserved.