“For me, painting has never been about capturing the exactness of a moment. But rather, taking the joy of the scene that I see and feel and expressing it on canvas for others to take part in. The palette knife is an extension of my thoughts as it makes quick work to articulate the beauty of the scene before me in a bright, colorful palette.”

About Karen

Karen Alf Rolfes is a highly skilled and accomplished impressionistic oil painter based in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Over the past twenty years, she has meticulously honed her unique artistic talents, drawing inspiration from her family of esteemed interior designers and artists. Embracing her creative heritage, Karen embarked on a journey to find her artistic voice, refining her craft under the tutelage of respected artists such as Robert Moore, Cheri Christensen, Don Sahli, and Pierre Bittar. Notably, it was the renowned French artist Pierre Bittar who first introduced Karen to the palette knife technique, a signature element of her artistic expression that has come to define her work. This innovative method has been instrumental in distinguishing her vibrant and expressive pieces from her contemporaries. Her extraordinary pieces have resonated with art enthusiasts across the globe, resulting in her artwork being featured in prestigious private and corporate collections throughout the United States and abroad.

During the summers, Karen can be found at her picturesque gallery in Harbor Springs, Michigan, where she continues to create and showcase her captivating works.

Karen's undeniable talent has not gone unnoticed by the art world. Her work has been prominently showcased in esteemed publications such as The Scout Guide Cincinnati, Blink Art Resource, Art Tour International, Venue Magazine, and Michigan Home. Karen has also exhibited her pieces in distinguished art events, including Artexpo Las Vegas, Artexpo New York, Art Santa Fe, Spectrum Miami, Steidel's Hamptons, and Steidel's Palm Beach.

Adding to her impressive portfolio, Karen has achieved significant recognition for her work at the prestigious ACA show, an event that brings together international artists and jurors. Here, she was honored with the title of Landscape Artist of the Year, became a National Exhibition Finalist, and received numerous coveted Purchase Awards.

Besides focusing on her own artistic pursuits, Karen has positively influenced the art community by mentoring and supporting budding young artists. She has also taught at The Woman's Art Club Cultural Center in Cincinnati, sharing her skills and experience with others.

Giving Back To The Community

Karen has been donating her original artwork to many charities within her community.

Various organizations who have benefited from the gift of her paintings include: