Karen Maness is a visual artist, muralist, designer, and educator with thirty years of painting and fabrication experience for the entertainment industry. She creates expansive landscapes and intimate stories of people through her contemporary realist work. Lecturer with the University of Texas at Austin Department of Theatre & Dance, The School of Design & Creative Technologies, and Scenic Art Supervisor for Texas Performing Arts, her courses build upon a culture of encouraging risk-taking, academic rigor, and mutual respect. Maness has worked extensively in theatre, themed attractions, industrial display, and music tours teaching master painting classes in the USA and abroad. Maness is a proponent of digital-analog fluidity for artists and hands-on, project-based, interdisciplinary team collaboration. In 2019 she led the installation of UT Austin's Creek Monster Habitat for Waterloo Greenway Conservancy's 2019 Creek Show.
She is the co-author of the award-winning The Art of the Hollywood Backdrop, the definitive behind-the-scenes history of Hollywood's motion picture scenic art. Her studio practice includes public art, exhibitions, corporate and private commissions.
Karen's career as a scenic artist has profoundly affected her instincts and practice as a studio artist, ever reminding her of the palpable, dynamic, spacial interplay between character, story, and environment -- the theatre of daily life.
Discover more artists