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“My work is about understanding space — imagining, utilizing it and enhancing it.[…]In my work I try to encompass.” - Karen Rifas

Karen Rifas was born in Chicago, but currently lives and works in Miami. Rifas has shown nationally and internationally since the 1980s. She is known for large-scale architectural installations in three media: leaf and cord installations, cord and mural installations, and colorful solid geometric shapes in two and three dimensions. Rifas’ 20-year collaboration with choreographer and dancer Dale Andree animates her installations in a way that expresses how Rifas, once a dancer herself, thinks about space. Her exhibition at MDC Museum of Art + Design, curated by Jeremy Mikolajczak, presented 19 years of her installation work in the Oolite Walgreens Window, private residences, galleries, and museums in the form of her scale models for them. In 2020, the Bass Museum of Art commissioned a series of banners by Rifas for their Art Outside initiative. Additionally, she is the second recipient of The Michael Richards Award, presented by Oolite Arts. Her work is represented in many public and private collections, including Museo de Arte de Ponce in Puerto Rico, The Bass Museum of Art, Fairchild Tropical Gardens, Oolite Arts, NSU Art Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami, Miami-Dade Art in Public Places Trust, and Perez Art Museum Miami. Her work is represented by Emerson Dorsch Gallery.

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Karen Rifas

9504, 2021

Acrylic on gessoboard

12" x 12" x 2.25"