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  • Writer's picturePeggy Nichols

Joan Baral, a multi-media artist whose current works focus on monotype printmaking,

Updated: Nov 2, 2021

'Why make art? Or anything?

Because you can, and you do it as a form of creative play.

Your handprint records your existence. Physically and intellectually you are responding to life. Creating is magic.

The process, engagement and thrill in creating, the satisfaction in communicating are all good reasons to continue making art. Exploring new ideas, experimenting with new materials, methods, styles and forms is motivation. It is intoxicating fun. You want to try and learn everything.

If one is lucky enough to be encouraged and exposed to like-minded people and their art, you begin to realize the possibilities. If visual experiences mesmerize you, the decision to pursue art is inevitable.'

'Nasturtums', monotype, 20 x 18 inches

'I was a lucky child. I had supportive parents and creative babysitters. I attended classes at the Art Institute of Chicago in elementary and secondary school. There, I became familiar with many artist's work, their lives and experience. They became my idols and mentors.

I graduated with a BA in Art Education at the University of Illinois, working with many influential professors. I moved to Los Angeles, California where I continued classes at California State University, Northridge. I earned a MA degree in Sculpture. I also studied Color Theory and Painting at the University of California, Los Angeles.

I taught Multicultural Art classes for 26 years for the Los Angeles Unified School District and Adult Professional Development classes for the school district at the University of California, San Diego.

Sharing my enthusiasm for learning about other cultures and periods of history and the skills needed, made my teaching career exciting and fulfilling.'

'Paris', monotype

'All this rich experience took place while the role of women in society was changing. This affected my choice of subject matter and motivation. I explored figure drawing, portraiture, bronze sculpture , collage, oil painting, watercolor and silkscreen printmaking. Trying a multitude of mediums allowed me to remember feelings of 'Being' through these decades, while the look of the work changed and evolved.'

'Koi Caucus', monotype, 20 x 18 inches

'I am presently working in monotype printmaking. The subjects change depending on what interests me and the influences that I experience. I use my drawings, photographs, former ideas and themes, and nature to allow the process to teach me. And I experiment.

The work had refined my skills in color and painting techniques. I am still challenged to explore within the boundaries of this type of printing process. I feel fortunate to have this opportunity to continue art making.

I am lucky to have had Art in my life.'

'Mirage', monotype, 20 x 18 inches

'Portofino', monotype, 18 x 20 inches

'Joan Baral, Self Portrait', monotype, 10 x 10 inches

Joan Baral, working in her studio.

Instagram: @joan.mall.baral

Joan Baral will be participating in the Women Painters West, 100 Years from November 13th 2021 thru January 8th, 2022. Please visit the Brand Library and Art Center at:

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