Kim Rodeffer Funk

As Kim is about to see the end of the sixth decade of her life, she is so energized with creative possibilities. Having come in the back door to fine art from design, she feels a huge amount of freedom to create and explore the promise of continued ideas introduced during the last almost-sixty years. The future holds the promise of even greater opportunities as she looks forward to an explosion of inspiration.

Having studied interior design during it’s academic infancy at Virginia Tech, Kim learned a great deal about how to use creative potential to change lives. That has stayed with her throughout her twenty-year design practice and into the endless possibilities that paintings have in also making a difference. She knew when the time was right to make this change as it had to be on her own terms.  The crossroads of having the maturity of letting go of the familiarity of design and the willingness of placing the rawness of herself on the canvas had to be met before she could make this transition. 

Living the first half of her life across the US gave Kim a visual language which is rich and varied. She always knew abstract visual work would be the direction she would travel. She was not exposed to the visual abstract until she caught a glimpse of it in the last few weeks of high school and further into college art history.  American Abstract Expressionism touched her heart.  Maybe it was the rebellious nature, but more so it was the raw emotion which she intuitively understood that really tugged at her heartstrings. Finally she had found something which made sense to her and she knew she had to explore it further. Design gave her a strength in confined realism, and abstract painting has allowed her to follow what has always had a much deeper meaning to her—that of what is not always seen.

Years later, the opportunity to move to Europe was an eye-opener and pushed her deeper and deeper into this exploration. She felt really honored to have had lived there and to still have the opportunity to work there. Sharing her studios with a European artist has not only enriched Kim’s life, but it has also pushed her art in ways she could have never imagined just fifteen years ago.  Kim and Andrea Hupke de Palacio have been art friends for years and they resonate in a rare way.  After a great deal of thought and working together they decided to create Atelier 325 as a platform for sharing across art forms.  In addition to sharing studios in Europe and the United States, they often share a single canvas and paint as The Third Artist.  This has allowed for even deeper exploration into how emotions are shared between people and expressed visually.  They paint so well as one artist on a single canvas they wonder if they will ever have any one-person shows.  This endeavor, with Andrea, has changed her own work for the better. Now, not only is there her own influences to call upon when painting, but she has learned to use the experiences and knowledge base of others in her effort.

While she still has strong ties to Europe, she has begun to dip her fingers into the art world in the United States. It is a new and exciting adventure, one which will bring even more vision for art and more insights to a different way to work. That is exciting.

photo by Elizabeth Funk

photo by Elizabeth Funk