Marlene Kallstrom-Barritt is from Red Deer, Alberta, Canada, where she can be found in Kallstrom Studio working on her art, outside tending to her flower beds, visiting with family and friends, or reading a good book with a lovely cup of coffee in her hand and her Cocker Spaniel "Gunnar" at her side.
After finishing a long career as a Registered Nurse, she attended Red Deer College's Visual Art Program where she was grateful to receive the prestigious Jason Lang Scholarship, the Vasa Order of America Scholarship, Red Deer College's Visual Art Award, as well as its Permanent Student Art Collection Award. She is an active member of the Red Deer Arts Council, her Church, and her local Community Association. She participates in various Art Shows & Markets throughout the year in Alberta.
Marlene paints under the name "Kallstrom" to pay homage to her late parents, her very first encouragers.
"Downsizing. It forced me to act and think differently. It affected my art and dared me to venture away from my beloved realistic oil painting and risk my whole artistic life on a new way of combining painting and drawing to create what I call "Ascending", which is my experiment in Abstract Realism. This experiment has just enough abstraction to keep me interested and just enough realism to keep me grounded.
I have always been interested in patterns and details such as the fine lines in a flower petal, the serrated edges of a tree leaf, the colours in a piece of granite, or how the frost makes lovely patterns on window glass. Also, I think it's my need to have some slower times in these days of hurry-up to appreciate the details within a bigger picture.
In "Ascending", the spontaneously painted areas dictate where the hidden details are. I search for the different hues within the painting and capture them with ink. The combination of a loosely painted scene anchored by more controlled drawing results in a new and fresh artwork for me which I call Abstract Realism.
I include little "bubbles" of praise, or gratitude, in every art piece. The "bubbles" rise upward; hence, the name "Ascending". it is inspired by the the times when the mountains and hills burst into song and the trees of the fields clap their hands. It is my hope that my artwork will add a little joy, peace, or light to someone's day."