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THF Galleries: Photo Haiku of Barbara Kaufmann

Barbara Kaufmann

The Haiku Foundation honors the work of contemporary masters of the dual art of haiga: visual image wedded to haiku. This month’s featured artist is Barbara Kaufmann.

Barbara practiced nursing for 40+ years before retiring to a life of writing poetry, photographing the beaches and woods near her home in New York, gardening, hiking, making art and chasing grandchildren. Her Japanese short form poetry appears regularly in many print and online journals.  Her photo haiku, several of which have won awards, were featured on the Japanese television show, NHK Haiku Masters. Recently, she has been enjoying the exploration of mixed media including acrylics, watercolor and collage in her art. You can see more at her website. She offers the following artist’s statement:

Until recently, my camera has been the source of inspiration for my art and much of my poetry. I love being outdoors in nature. Shortly after retiring in 2010, I began making haiga. I was very taken by the digital effects I could achieve with the many photo/art programs available to me.  There seemed no end to my thirst for capturing the beauty that surrounds us. If I wasn’t hiking in the woods or in the dunes, I was working in my garden and the opportunities to capture a ‘haiku moment’ abounded. Recently, I have been drawn to explore collage and mixed media in my work. I especially enjoy recycling all kinds of paper and other objects and incorporating what may be considered trash by some into my art. This seems to dovetail with an urgent need to find ways to speak up for, and protect, the environment. It is exciting, at the age of 78, to explore other creative paths. As I develop new artistic muscles, my poetic voice becomes clearer to me and, I hope, to anyone reading or viewing my work.

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