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The Art of Karen Allaben Confer: Birds of Land, Sea and Sky


“To know the natural world is to understand it;
to understand it is to love it; to love it is to care for and interact responsibly with it.”

Karen Allaben-Confer is widely regarded as one of the great wildlife artists of our time.  The past exhibition featuring her work, Karen Allaben-Confer: Birds of Land, Sea, and Sky, ran from August 6 through October 26, 2013 at RTPI.

Love Among Razorbills G. M. Sutton Award

“Love Among Razorbills”, winner of the George Miksch Sutton Award

Birds have been the primary focus of Karen’s art for nearly four decades. Her perspective as an artist is built upon her belief that science and art are intimately connected – both requiring keen observational skills and both seeking truth. Her work beautifully demonstrates her knowledge of avian biology, behavior, and ecology, enhanced by her ornithologist husband Dr. John L. Confer, and the guidance of late friend and mentor the great wildlife artist Don R. Eckelberry, who dared her to break rules and clichés in art and urged her to see Nature on its own terms.

Karen has had many unique opportunities to sketch from life, most recently as Artist-in-Residence for the Peregrine Fund’s California Condor Release Project at Arizona’s Vermillion Cliffs Wilderness Area. As a result, her current projects back home in her Brooktondale, NY studio artistically document the work being done to help bring North America’s largest bird back from the brink of extinction.