Five questions to Lynn Alker

Five questions to Lynn Alker

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Lynn Alker is a self-taught abstract painter living in Raleigh, North Carolina. Bold applications of color and loose mark-making allow her to express topics such as mental health, ecological awareness, and feminine strife, among others which she hopes inspires the viewers' awareness and conscience. For Lynn, these realities guide the painting process and sometimes present to her after the fact.Since when do you paint and what are your favorite motives? 

My painting career started 7 years ago, at age 60, after taking a local traditional oils painting class. 

I fell in love with pushing paint and knew immediately that I wanted to pursue art in a serious manner. After raising a family and fulfilling other ambitions, art came into my life at the right time, and it filled a void I hadn’t realized existed. I have always loved and collected art but I never thought could create art until then. 

Line work and thick textured paint are two elements that get me fired up about a painting. I love watching the painting come alive and become its own entity. 

When you create a new work, how do you proceed? What comes first?

I usually start with lots of mark making, sometimes text and then laying paints. I decide in the moment what colors I’ll start with and build my palette around that. Once the painting starts to take shape, I hone in on the developing areas and begin to work toward a cohesive finish. My works are based on my past, present experiences and feelings, the seen and the unseen. From what do you get your motivation?

I never tire of painting, and I’m always happy to be in my studio. It’s a privilege to have the capability, materials, time and support to pursue what is now my passion. I need no outside motivation!

Your life without art would be...


I’ve lived a long time before creating art but I cannot imagine my life without it now. Art has colored my world in many ways. I love the process, personal challenges, friendships, recognition, expressive voice and freedom painting has given me. What is the best art place in your city at the moment?

I live in a strong arts community with opportunities for all artists, beginning and renown. 

In Raleigh, we are fortunate to have the North Carolina Museum of Art, a world class venue with fantastic sculptures, exhibitions and permanent works from Motherwell, Kline, Giacometti, Diebenkorn, Albert and Kiefer, to name just a few. I visit as often as I can.  @douglasstephenpitts, @elizgalecke