Artist Tara Funk Grim, Original Art Paintings and Prints, Seashore and Beaches, Boardwalks, Flowers, Bethany Beach Delaware


A passion for the visual world and the world of imagination has led to both plein air painting and creative exploration in the studio. Each painting is a journey into the unknown. The heart and mind become one with inspiration, imagination, and materials. It is the world of endless possibilities and discovery that beckons me.

Painting enplein air, I try to capture the essence of the place  based on what I am feeling, seeing, and what is going on around me. I push colors and exaggerate natural movements.

My most imaginative paintings are done in my studio where I work with a variety of materials including acrylic and collage. My paintings start with an idea, color, and composition. The development of the painting is guided by intuition, experience, the application and manipulation of materials and what is visually happening on the canvas. As choices are made the painting evolves and emerges. This method of working allows my imagination to soar.

At first look, the viewer sees the subject. The application of the paint and abstraction of horizons and shapes invites a more intimate view and ultimately, a release from thought.

Beginning an art career painting seasonal themes on Atlantic City boardwalk store windows, I continued my education with a BA from Chestnut Hill College and teacher certification from Kutztown University. I am a signature member of the Pennsylvania Watercolor Society and have exhibited widely and received many awards. Painting for over 30 years, my work has been featured recently in several publications,100 Plein Air Painters of the Mid-Atlantic and AcrylicWorks 2: Radical Breakthroughs and AcrylicWorks 3: Celebrating Texture.

Tara Funk Grim, an Extraordinary Artist

It is extremely hard to judge artwork and artists.  Mostly a person responds to images they like.  However, there are differences between the artists that history notes versus those whose work is not preserved.   The description of that difference is that the artists, who become artists of history, have work that is more than an execution of art technique. The art connotes a notion.  The notion may not be easy to describe, but from one piece to the next, that notion is there.  The combination of art technique and notion creates a unique artistic style.

The artwork of Tara Funk Grim contains a notion.  Paintings whether they are executed in plein air or her studio are full of motion, light and color.  They introduce the viewer to the world as Tara sees it.  It is not an accident that Tara often paints a Ferris wheel or a rollercoaster.  The idea of movement is a core fundamental of her work.  When she paints a subject that is not moving there is always the sense of dancing light and wind.

I have heard some viewers of Tara’s paintings say they are abstracted images.  No matter how full of color and line the images are they are not abstractions; they are concrete images of life in motion.  Tara’s obsession for painting motion carries her to extremes.  I have seen her look like a person so possessed by the project of her painting that I wonder if she is okay.   Her passion for the project of communicating motion has driven her to paint for hours without end.  From this dedication, she has come to possess extraordinary skill.

The alla prima painter commits to painting from life and accomplishes a painting in only one session.  That session may last 36 hours, but it must be done in one session.   The problem in the method is that the artist does not have the time to age the painting.  Aging a painting is like creating vintage wine.  Fermentation must occur where the heart and mind of the artist become one with the final image. The alla prima painter is afraid that the directness of paint application will suffer if there is time to reflect on the work.  In Tara’s case, she loses no directness and gains vintage.  Vintage provides flavor you want to taste repeatedly.  Thus, we call her work Beyond Alla Prima.  Beyond Alla Prima means painting from life with total involvement of your heart and soul. 

Now you may ask how are paintings done in a studio possibly done from life?  The answer is that an artist has to develop a visual memory of the moments they experience that are intense.  The only way to do that is to force yourself to work from those memories.  When Tara is in the studio the image she paints is so strongly in her visual memory that she may as well be standing in front of the location she paints.  What happens by doing work in her studio is that she connects her reality to her visions.  This makes her not just possess extraordinary skill but makes her into an extraordinary artist.

As a long time art dealer, I love representing the artwork of Tara Funk Grim.

Barb Dougherty
American Art Gallery
Snow Hill, MD
October 4, 2012