Carol Brown Goldberg is a highly educated, knowledgeable, and original artist. She graduated from the Corcoran School of Art in 1975, and by the end of the decade she had already earned a place at the center of the Washington, DC, art world. She showed regularly in DC’s commercial and alternative galleries, while her restless, inquisitive mind feasted on the artistic, scientific, and cultural treasures to be found in Washington’s great museums. I grew familiar with Carol’s work in the 70s and 80s, first as a young dealer and then as a curator. Even then, I always knew where I could find Carol. She was, and is today, most likely at work in her studio.

Carol is deeply and tirelessly engaged in the pursuit of her muse. She is busy painting, sculpting, drawing, printing, photographing, filming, videotaping, and writing. Her art spans the legacy of the Washington Color School and the figurative tradition of American University, where she taught for many years. She has the hand of a Victorian engraver, the wit and pathos of Dada, and the physical gesture of Post-Impressionists and Abstract Expressionists. Throw in some Pop and Op and you still have not satisfactorily described her gifts or her influences, for she is as influenced by physicists, astronomers, neuroscientists, neurobiologists as she is by artists or movements.

I wrote about Carol’s art ten years ago, and my opinion hasn’t changed:

I used to think it was the job of an artist to impose order on the chaos around us, but watching Carol’s work evolve over the years, I now think the artist may be discovering order in what to us only appears to be chaotic. The job of the artist would seem to require equal parts faith and science. Carol Brown Goldberg possesses both of these gifts , and the sensitivity and skill to construct visual metaphors suggesting our place in a beautiful and mysterious universe.

Since then, Carol’s work has only gotten better, stronger. It has travelled to many countries around the world, including France, Spain, and Mexico. Despite her persistent success over the years, I am confident in saying she is making her best art right now. I eagerly anticipate bringing much of this exhibition, Carol Brown Goldberg: Tangled Nature, back from the Frost Museum to the American University Museum in Washington, DC, next year. It will be cause for celebration.

Jack Rasmussen, PhD, Director and Curator,
American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center,
Washington, DC