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K a r e n   K o b l i t z:  N o n  F i c t i o n

About the Artist

Born in 1951 in Los Angeles, California, Karen Koblitz received her Masters of Fine Arts degree from the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 1976 and her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the California College of Arts and Crafts, Oakland, in 1973. She teaches at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, School of Fine Arts where she has been an adjunct faculty member since 1995.

Koblitz has exhibited her work in solo exhibitions and in more than 75 group exhibitions since the 1980s. Her works are included in museums from Hawaii to Italy.

Photo: Karen Koblitz

Ceramic tiles-hand carved, press mold technique; Slab built and
wheel thrown objects. 48 inches by 60 inches by 5 1/4 inches.

Non Fiction

When Karen Koblitz created Non Fiction for the Art Deco area at the Cerritos Library, she carefully considered the colors and decorative details of the site’s interior. She also examined the art, architecture and ornamentation of the Art Deco Movement (circa 1920s) before presenting a final design that would become the model for this ceramic relief.

Using the press mold technique, Koblitz began by carving her original design into clay. While the clay was still wet, she formed a plaster mold and then removed it to produce a negative image. Clay slabs were placed on the plaster form, pressure applied, and the resulting positive image was released and cut to the correct size. Each handmade tile has its own signature with varying surface density and texture that adds to overall interest and complexity. To achieve lively color, Koblitz applies an under-glaze colorant before a preliminary bisque firing. She fires the pieces or tiles again with a transparent, glossy or matte glaze on special tile setters that give an even heat distribution throughout the kiln producing a consistent glaze color.

Location: Art Deco Area, Young Adult