P
aula Garrick Klein

I have painted from observation for more than forty years – portraits and still life – which has allowed me to navigate aesthetic challenges and opportunities that range from pure exploration of light, color, pattern and texture to work that has more complex personal meaning.

My recent paintings include a series of cow portraits, inspired by the last small working beef cattle farm in my suburban Pittsburgh neighborhood, just steps from my backyard. I observe, photograph and paint these animals, as newborns, as they grow, and as mothers with calves of their own. While I initially painted the cattle juxtaposed within their landscape, my focus has now shifted to painting portraits of individual cows as well as group portraits that symbolize a network and culture we can only imagine. My intent is to capture the unique physicality and personality of each cow that I paint. Each animal is recognizable, soulful and spirited, tapping into my own need for a lost connection to nature, earth and motherhood. The cattle on this small farm provide me with artistic challenges, and at the same time, a personal source of symbolism, calm and comfort.