Barbara Sternberger’s lush abstract paintings demonstrate her interest in discovering a harmony between the application of paint and how it expresses the artist’s lived experiences. Conceptually her paintings are neither planned nor arbitrary. The paintings reveal themselves during the process of their making, in the present moment. For Confluence, Sternberger takes her exploration to a new level. She has created her own hand held paints with dry pigments, oil and wax to form an object which she holds and applies directly to the canvas. She then blends the color with a brush. The direct application of the color gives her both an immediacy and the ability to work at the canvas for long periods of time without interruption. It is in this process that a confluence of elements is born: the coming together of the palpable application of color and the more elusive blending of the brush. Perhaps most essential to Sternberger’s work is the confluence of mind through mood, aesthetics, and perception, and matter through the paint, brush, and surface that converges to create her emotionally moving paintings.
Sternberger received her MFA from the University of California, Irvine. Exhibitions of her work include those at the Museum of Northwest Art (La Conner, WA), Whatcom Museum (Bellingham, WA), Western Gallery at Western Washington University (Bellingham, WA), Long Beach Museum of Art (Long Beach, CA), and Leo Castelli Gallery (New York, NY). In 2010 she was the recipient of the Seattle Art Museum’s Betty Bowen Awards, Kayla Skinner Special Recognition Award, and her work has been included in the U.S. Department of State’s Art in Embassies Program. Her work is included in many private and public collections, including those of The Bing Foundation at Stanford Hospital (Stanford, CA), Kirk Douglas (Beverly Hills, CA), and Rolf Nelson (New York, NY), among others.