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Born in Munich, Germany, Karsten’s first

art influences came from his parents,

an architect father and a sculptress

mother. He received formal training at

the Munich Royal Academy of Art and

traveled around Europe painting various

city and landscapes. After coming to the

United States in 1955, Karsten had an

illustrious career as a graphic designer

and illustrator in the Midwest.

Karsten enjoys working in both watercolor

and oil. He chooses between the two media

based on subject matter, inspiration and the

effect that he wants to achieve in his still lifes

and landscapes.

Ellen Sprogø-Topelmann (1926-2016)

Ellen applied her acrylics generously with

a painting knife or brush. Her most popular

motifs show happy “little people” frolicking.

These animated summer and winter scenes

reflect a romantic nostalgia of bye-gone days.

A limited number of original “little people”

paintings by Ellen are available.

While working in Chicago, Karsten met

another artist, Ellen Sprogø who was also

from Germany. Ellen’s hometown was the

Hanseatic city of Hamburg, where she

also studied art. After her arrival to the

United States in the 1950s, she created

animation art for television and worked

as a fashion designer in Chicago. Her

first acrylic paintings were created in the

Hillwertz Studio in Chicago. 

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