Carol Bruns (b. Des Moines, Iowa 1943) is an artist living in Brooklyn, New York, working in sculpture and drawing. She graduated NYU 1966 in Fine Arts, then attended the Art Students League, NYC and l'Academie de La Grande Chaumiere, Paris. She first exhibited in 1975 at OK Harris Gallery showing wall works made from found supports cloaked with cloth and thin, colored plaster. In 1980 she was guest artist at the Caraccio Etching Studio, Orion Editions published her prints, and in 2002 she received a printmaking fellowship at the Women's Studio Workshop. From 2000-2006 she was in four two-person exhibitions at the Tew Gallery, Atlanta, Georgia. Group exhibitions continued throughout this time as well as community organizing (Dumbo Open Studios), curating (Persona, A New Look at Portraits 1997; Festival of Political Pleasure 2017), publishing artist's books (Pages, with Robert Jacks), and stage décor (Bellerophon Dance Company). In 2013 she was interviewed by Gorky's Granddaughter, and in 2019 received a Tree of Life grant. Her most recent exhibitions were at The Parlour Bushwick in 2015, Sculpture Space in Long Island City, SRO Gallery in Brooklyn in 2017-18, and Zurcher Gallery 2022. Ms. Bruns also writes art essays and reviews exhibitions, two most recently published in d'Art International and artcritical.com.
My work in sculpture and drawing focuses on the human experience in its complexity, perplexity, humor, range, and depth, while its forms reference expressionism, the mythic mind, Jungian archetypes, world wide indigenous art, political events, and folk art. The life-sized figures and wall mounted masks are constructed and modeled from the common, inexpensive materials of paper, plaster, bamboo, styrofoam, cement, and steel. Its sculptural language employs a unique paper laminate with a thin finishing plaster, a self-invented technique that wrinkles, sags, and bumps, evoking the natural world. These materials do not permit fine effects but instead direct attention to the values of spontaneity, montage, surprise, the unconscious, and mythic. It is an aesthetic that often juxtaposes the geometrically precise with the earthy and tactile, while its colors of dawn and dusk invite the viewer to a mythic world of spirts, angels, and gods.