“Dreams, visions, and spirituality emerge from the depth of the subconscious. Struggling to be free, their release is to be expressed by the energy of color and form.

Inanimate objects become symbols of the natural world through suggested movement or complete stillness.

A juxtaposition of precise control and articulated looseness of the body and the mind creates the non-reality that extends into reality.

This is my art.”

About The Artist

Recognized in the Washington, DC area as a surrealistic painter, in addition to a mixed-media sculptor and an art educator for over 20 years, Carolyn returned to her native North Carolina to continue her creative lifestyle.

Using bright acrylic colors and frequently mixed-media, Carolyn brings her own imaginative interpretations of birds, nature, and her love of the sea and sky to the canvas. Nationally recognized artists and museum curators have juried her works for inclusion in national shows.

Carolyn was selected from over 1,400 national and international artists by the District of Columbia Commission on the Arts, to participate with 150 artists to paint individual large scale sculptures exhibited in Washington. She was affiliated for many years with the Greater Reston Arts Center (GRACE). Her original works have been exhibited in the Touchstone Gallery, Washington, DC, the Target Gallery associated with the Torpedo Factory, Alexandria, VA, and the Joanne Rose Gallery, Reston, VA. Other works are included in private collections primarily on the east coast, nationally and internationally. 

Since relocating to NC, Carolyn has continued painting with an interest in nature. When she first arrived, excited by the ocean and the incredible NC skies she painted realistic sea shells and birds in surrealistic settings. Her more recent work includes some Pop Art and an ongoing series using wooden mannequins. She uses multi-level canvases and found and constructed objects. ON THE EDGE was recently exhibited in a juried show at the Target Gallery, Alexandria, VA. Carolyn currently does not exhibit in galleries unless it is a special show.  She had been developing a body of work for several years to be exhibited in the future.  She most recently was invited to participate in the ARTISTS AND CHARITIES HAND IN HAND exhibition in West Palm Beach, FLA. where she chose to exhibit her new works.  

She has exhibited at the Cameron Art Museum in the State of the Art exhibition and the Arboretum, Wilmington, NC in addition to the Figments Gallery.

 Carolyn complemented her Masters of Art degree from East Carolina University with further studies in France and Taiwan. She continues to be a private art educator to children and adults and is a docent at the Cameron Art Museum, with a great love for sharing her knowledge and experiences of being an artist.

Explanation of Art Work

Storytelling, surrealism, and constructions have been the basis of my art work for many years. Most of my painted canvases are three-dimensional constructions that incorporate a love of, and background in, sculpture. Nature and spirituality are continuing themes. The uniqueness of each artist’s work comes through visuals and life experiences. Some are seen optically as they observe, and others arrive through the recesses of the subconscious. My inspiration tends to come mostly from the latter.

Historically, I have been focused on surrealism that was based on dreams, visions, and real objects. My paintings of this ilk always tell a story based on the real and unreal. My current series is an exciting new journey into the exploration of humor, wonder, and just letting one’s mind expand.

My recent approach is to visualize a painting itself as the back drop and stage upon which objects – primarily wooden art mannequins and “sticks” (wooden dowel rods and PVC pipe) —come together to evoke stories and characters. Multiple canvases are often used to create depth. Cutting shapes out of the canvas, the use of found objects, and platforms add more dimension. The uniformity of the mannequins is transformed as each one plays a unique role in the overall piece of art. They then become objects with individual personalities. Dependent upon the light source, the sticks create movement through slow moving shadows. The negative space the sticks create become as important as the positive space.

Stories are often suggested, traversing back and forth from Pop Art, to spiritualism, to social statement. Some of the work is meant to relate to both children and adults. The adult and child become one through memories. Examples are: “Snow White Plays Pick-Up Sticks” and “Sugar Daddy Pop Art”. One a childhood story, the other a childhood treat that bridges all ages. Adults and children can also identify with “On the Edge”. The children enjoy the suggestive playfulness of the mannequins, while adults can appreciate the title of the Scrabble tiles. These intersections evoke a freedom of interpretation that allows those who own the pieces to find new meanings and experience various feelings, depending on their current circumstances as they view the art over time.

Copyright © 2019 Carolyn Faulkner