Karen Starrett Belfer

"Painting these paintings in what I regard as an unconscious state allowed me to process my emotions safely. Experiencing myself this way brought a tremendous sense of relief and happiness into my heart. I had not been able to safely experience the intensity of these feelings within my body, thus accounting for the numbness, which I know see protected me from them. Figurative Testimonials explore my emotional and spiritual acceptance of my health. That is where I found joy and humor. I am now able to look at my body as separate from my soul and find joy in the latter.  

It was after I completed the first six paintings that I realized another healing component of my paintings. I am familiar with chakras -- an eastern philosophy of energy centers aligned in the body. Each chakra has a color, a location, and a function. I realized that my palette; the red, orange, and yellow colors of my paintings, were the colors of the lower chakras where my cancer was located. It was my subconscious trying to heal. As I entered my fourth year in remission from stage 3 ovarian cancer, I feel my paintings are a major component of my healing."

-Excerpt from Karen Starrett Belfer's Capelli Essay

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