About Karen

Karen Alf Rolfes, born in 1961, is an impressionistic oil painter. She lives in Cincinnati with her husband and four children. Karen is known for her colorful flowers, trees, landscapes, farm animals and water scenes. She paints at her gallery where she sells her work. Oil Paintings By Karen Rolfes is located at 6808 Miami Avenue in Madeira, Ohio. The gallery is typically open Tuesday-Saturday 11:00-3:00. Or, feel free to make an appointment.

Karen uses playful strokes to create texture while using a palette knife. This technique was first introduced to her by Pierre Bittar, a well-known French artist. Karen has studied the works of Claude Monet's water lily ponds and gardens at Giverny. Her grandfather and uncle, also painters, have had an impact on her blossoming career. Karen's clientele has now expanded throughout the United States.

Karen has been featured at The New York Art Expo, Art Santa Fe and Spectrum Miami. Her awards include ACA National Finalist 2013, Landscape Artist of the Year 2014, William W. Duebber Award, The YWCA Winner and Purchase Award 2016 and a two page spread in Venue Magazine. Karen has also been featured in Blink Art Resource 2015, 2016 and 2017.

Each year Karen travels to a different part of the country where she continues to learn and grow. After many hours of observing, learning, and painting she has developed her own unique style.

"My passion is to re-create what I see in nature. The canvas becomes an interpretation without forgetting value, hue, and perspective. Inspiration is a common word in my vocabulary. I continue to paint because it makes me happy."

Awards and Accolades


Giving Back to the Community

Karen has been donating her original artwork to many charities within her community. Examples of the various organizations who have benefited from the gift of her paintings include:

American Diabetes Association
American Heart Association
Antiques Festival 
Art Barn
Bethany House
Cancer Free Kids
Cris Collinsworth Proscan Fund
Christ Hospital
Cincinnati Arts Association
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center
Cincinnati Country Day School
Cincinnati Nature Center
Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens
Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Cincinnati
D'Art For Art
Dress For Success
Harbor Springs Community Schools
Harbor Springs Michigan Save The Trees
Indian Hill Church
Indian Hill Schools
Josh Cares/Hits for Kids
Karen Wellington Foundation
Kenzie’s Closet
Kindervelt Life and Hope Network
Linder Center of Hope
Madeira Historical Society
Mary Jo Cooper Family Center for Breast Cancer
Mayfield Education and Research Foundation
Moeller High School
1N5 Warrior Run
Pregnancy East
Pro Kids
Ronald McDonald House Charities
Saint Joe’s Orphanage
Saint Xavier High School
Save The Trees
SPCA Fur Ball
Springer School Library
Stepping Stones
Summit Country Day School
Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation
Talbert House
Tiffany Foundation
Ursuline Academy 
Village Life Outreach