Summer Street Gallery: Paula Moser Steffen

Saturday February 1, 2020 - Wednesday February 26, 2020
12:00pm - 6:00pm

I was raised in Des Moines, Iowa and spent many hours immersed in the eclectic collection of the Des Moines Art Center. There, among the work of artists such as Rodin, Rouault, and Rothko, I took numerous classes in drawing, sculpture, and design. I continued my art education at Iowa State University, where I majored in anthropology, with a double minor in psychology and art. At that time, I explored organic shape and color contrast with linocut prints. Native American patterns were a strong influence.

After marrying and raising two babies, I returned to graduate school and moved to Boston to earn my Ph.D. in experimental psychology at Boston University. During that period I worked with a variety of mediums. My primitive clay figures were informed by neoshamanic journeys as well as the work of archeologist Marija Gimbutas. By the mid 1990s, I was working with acrylics, creating still lifes, landscapes, and action paintings.

After working as a behavioral psychologist for many years, I turned to writing crime fiction under the name P.M. Steffen while continuing to make art: monoprint, collage, photography, color field, and, most recently, Abstract Expressionist painting. To paraphrase Hans Hofmann, when I make an abstract painting, I want NOT to know what I’m doing. I paint with feeling, not with knowing.