Barbara Kelley was born to a couple that survived WWII, moved to the territory of Alaska and built a log cabin. The firstborn slept in the top drawer of the dresser ~ a rather unique bassinet. In that small cabin, with one light, and water piped to the kitchen, it was an early winter when the ground and waterline froze. Her dad raised the wooden floor of the closet and dug a well for indoor water. The pioneer philosophy is an integral part of her creative process. New frontiers, experimentation and exploration are evident in her works.
Barbara completed a Bachelor of Arts degree, combining coursework from the California State University and the University of California, Berkeley. After receiving her degree she returned to complete three additional years of college courses specializing in printmaking and painting. She also studied at the Kala Art Institute, Rocky Vine Press, Evans Encaustics, and Brinker Ink and first exhibited her works in a gallery in the 1980’s.
Her works echo both Eastern and Western cultures and have been described as having "the simplicity reminiscent of Chinese and Japanese art," frequently evoking a meditative sense of inner calm.
Her works, recently selected to join the Pat Clark International Art Collection at the Ellsworth Foundation in Iowa Falls, joins a collection, which includes works by Man Ray, Japanese artist Kojiro Akagi, and Danish artist Leif Peterson. Her works are also in public collections of the Brooklyn Art Library, Kaiser Permanente, U.S. Department of State, Art in Embassies Program, Visual Artists’ Registry. Private collections of her works reside in Australia, Canada, Europe, and throughout the United States.
Barbara’s works have been exhibited widely, including at the Icehouse Gallery, Marin Museum of Contemporary Art, the Art Museum of Los Gatos, Spindrift Gallery, the W. Keith and Janet Kellogg Art Gallery, Haldan Art Gallery, Quercia Gallery, Dolphin Gallery, and the Olive Hyde Art Gallery.
She now creates works at the Moon Catcher Studio, located in the heart of the wine country in Sonoma County, California and at her second studio overlooking the Pacific Ocean located about 2 hours north of San Francisco in the scenic community of The Sea Ranch.