Barbara, a modern realist painter. Her voice depicts people and objects painted from life.
Originally trained as an industrial designer, she was one of the first designers working for Gianfranco Zaccai in his Boston-based firm Design Continuum. Leaving Boston and the design world, Barbara pursued an education in fine art, earning a BFA in painting from the University of Illinois. Her training continued when she moved to San Diego and studied at the La Jolla Athenaeum under Ken and Stephanie Goldman, and Pat Kelly. Today, Barbara divides her time between her California studio and her apartment in New York.
Behind the Scenes
I make paintings of common objects and ordinary people. My goal is to portray them with directness, honesty, and empathy. I grew up drawing and painting, My art training began as a child and gave me a strong skill base. While working on my BFA in painting I veered away from realism toward conceptualism. Years later, when I was older and more sure of my direction, I returned to the practice of traditional oil painting.
Along the way I have been inspired by post-impressionist painters such as Cezanne and more recent figurative painters like Lucian Freud and Alice Neel. To this day, the pursuit of expressive and technical excellence through representational painting still excites me.
I work predominately from life. Direct observation builds an emotional connection with my subject. I try to paint a still life or person with sensitivity, but not sentimentality or romanticism. To accomplish this I must approach them with respect and an appreciation for their individuality. I hope this results in paintings that engage viewers formally and emotionally.