Karen Gaudette is an artist and teacher living in western Massachusetts. For over two decades, she has worked exclusively in scratchboard. Trained as a printmaker at the University of Massachusetts but with a lifelong passion for drawing, Gaudette favors scratchboard as her medium of choice since it has the immediacy of drawing with the look of woodcuts and engravings.
Her work has been exhibited throughout the country including California, Illinois, Indiana, and Vermont. In 2016, Gaudettte had a solo exhibit at the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center in Brattleboro, Vermont. In addition to displaying the original drawings, her scratchboard illustrations have appeared in calendars, datebooks, and magazines both regionally and nationally.
For as long as I can recall, I have been influenced by folklore and symbolism. Whether I am creating an image of a mythical figure or inventing my own characters, I am compelled to include layers of visual symbols in my designs and borders. As an artist, I believe that Art is a language and I choose to tell my stories through the flora and fauna that populate my drawings. While I spent over a decade drawing the human figure, in the past eight years I have chosen to focus on animals, often anthropomorphizing them. In part, I made this decision because the medium of scratchboard beautifully conveys textures and patterns that are found in fur, feathers, and fiber. In addition, I can express a range of emotions through my animal subjects that are subtle and thought-provoking.