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
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.