Featured Artist Member

Featured Artist Member honors the artist members of Berkeley Art Center, highlighting the breadth and variety of mediums, processes and concepts engaged by our community. Only artists whose memberships are current will be considered. To become a member, please sign up HERE. To fill out our Artist Member Informational Survey , click HERE.

Featured Artist May-June 2018

Lorrie Fink

Oakland painter Lorrie Fink interprets images she has collected from the natural world. With her studio located in her garden, she is surrounded by the bounty of nature.

Born and raised in Washington, D.C., she earned a B.S. in Broadcasting and Film and a Master of Education degree in Media and Technology, both from Boston University. While working at the Oakland Museum of California in the late 1970s, Fink was first introduced to the Society of Six California Colorists, whose work influenced her desire to explore color and light through painting.

She enrolled in her first painting class at UC Berkeley Extension in 1982, and has continued her painting studies in classes and workshops.

Her work has been exhibited in numerous group shows, both nationally and around the Bay Area since 2003, and is included in private collections throughout the U.S. Four of her paintings have been acquired recently for a medical center in Dublin, CA. The exhibition “Out Loud” at Firehouse Art Center in Pleasanton, CA in November 2017 was her fourth solo show.

Lorrie Fink has lived and worked within walking distance of Lake Merritt since 1975. She welcomes you to visit her studio — and garden! — during East Bay Open Studios, June 2 & 3. 


Artist Statement

I paint with oils, using the attitude and expressiveness of natural forms to investigate color and pattern. I observe native and non-native plants I’ve encountered in wilderness areas, vacant lots, and on the edges of my own backyard. Absorbing nature through all my senses, I return to my studio to distill the essence and energy of things that grow wildly without invitation or cultivation.

Color exploration is an important component of my practice. I mix multiple sets of harmonious palette studies using a limited selection of colors, and refer to these palettes as I work through a series. I build up paintings with layers of transparent glazes and opaque marks.

In the Out Loud/Corn Lily series, I paint abstracted interpretations of botanical sources, working from digital compositions to establish contour and pattern motifs. The paintings suggest geologic patterns, biomorphic shapes, and movement. 

Corn lilies are native perennials that grow in southwestern regions of North America. Although considered toxic and somewhat invasive, they contain a unique alkaloid that is used to treat certain forms of cancer.

Where is a plant considered a weed? When is it welcomed in the wilderness but unwelcome in a cultivated environment? These plants provoke questions about desirability and valuation. Painting them allows me to coalesce my love for color, paint, and the natural world.

Click here to visit the artist's website.

Click on images to enlarge.






Entreaty, Corn Lily 157
Oil & graphite on panel
36 x 36 inches. 2017

Unruly Passengers, 156 Oil & graphite on panel 36 x 36 inches. 2017

Unruly Passengers, 156
Oil & graphite on panel
36 x 36 inches. 2017

Unbridled, Corn Lily 158
Oil & graphite on panel
36 x 36 inches. 2017

Under the Influence, Corn Lily 160
Oil & graphite on panel
36 x 36 inches. 2017

For a list of previously featured Member Artists, click the link for the Index of Featured Artists.