Artist to explore duality of art at TASI

Published 12:20 pm Wednesday, January 7, 2009

BEAUMONT — The artist seeks to reflect the inner self on to the canvas and reveal it to the world. Karen Click’s art reflects the thoughts and emotions of Beaumonter Lynn Sanchez. Click has a unique ability to interpret Sanchez’s hopes and fears, pains and sorrows. It helps that they are the same person.

“Karen is my real name and Click is my mother’s name,” she said. “Click is my ‘Paint’ name.”

It is Click who speaks with vigor about painting. Sanchez is quieter. She lets Click speak for her through her painting.

Click’s expressions will be on display in the show, “Reflections of My Life,” at The Art Studio. The show will open with a free reception from 7 to 10 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 10 and will run through Jan. 31.

The Art Studio is at 720 Franklin St. in downtown Beaumont. For information, call 838-5393 or visit

Clicks work consistently turns to themes of boldness and challenge. She is constantly seeing how far an artist can go in her work and asks if there should be a limit — a sort of self-censorship. But she doesn’t want her work to be about a particular viewpoint.

“I want it more about getting to the public and allowing them to see the strong lines and the personal feelings behind this,” she said. “And when they see the personal feelings behind the paintings, they see me.”

Click works in a sparsely-furnished efficiency apartment which allows for her wheelchair. Four years ago her nervous system shut down. After initially being misdiagnosed, she was told she suffered from exinol neuropathy, a disease that affects the nervous system. She cannot walk and she said she is in constant pain.

But she said she wants people to see her for who she is, not just as someone in a wheelchair.

“Your friends treat you a little bit different,” she said. “It’s like you are made of glass and they are afraid you will break.”

Prior to her illness, Click was a housekeeper and laborer, both of which require physical activity. Click’s expressionism reflects the end of that way of life. She said the paintings she did when she was healthy are as different as night and day from the ones she is doing now.

“The work is stronger now,” she said. “Before (the illness), I lived in that particular world and that was taken away. Now I look at the world different.”

Click’s figures are often slightly gaunt and drawn. In much of her work, one gets a sense of melancholy. But the work is not depressive. There is a sense of understanding and acceptance that draws the viewer in.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox