Joan Konkel was raised in Northern California where she attended San Francisco College for Women, earning a BFA and a MA. In 1980 she received an MFA in Sculpture from George Washington University in Washington, DC. Konkel then worked for furniture designer Peter Danko where she participated in the many phases of fabricating bent-plywood chairs.
After leaving Peter Danko and Associates, Konkel soon returned to her own work, but decided that without a studio, her sculpture had to be reduced to a smaller scale. She began incorporating metal into garments and shortly after was awarded a five thousand dollar grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for this work. The same year, she was selected in competitive judging as one of eleven Washington/Baltimore Metropolitan Area designers to have their work shown at the Renwick Gallery of Art in Washington, DC.
Konkel’s art career was put on hold in 1986 with the birth of her second child. Now that her children are older, she is returning to larger scale sculpture. Konkel's recent work incorporates sheet metal and mesh on canvas and is made to hang from a wall. The work explores optic and spatial effects, as well as the interplay of three-dimensional color. Current work may be viewed at the Zenith Gallery, Washington, DC.
2005 -ART IN EMBASSIES PROGRAM, US State Department
2004 - FORGED AND FABRICATED . Two person show, Zenith Gallery, WDC
2004 – THREAD, a group show presented by Zenith Gallery. Washington, DC
-ZENITH STYLE, 26TH Anniversary Exhibition, Zenith Gallery. Washington,
-INTERNATIONAL DISHMAN COMPETITION,
The Dishman Art Museum. Lamar University, Beaumont, Texas.
Juried by Dr. Dewey F. Mosby, Director, Picker Art Gallery, Colgate University.
Hiatus - After raising 2 children, Konkel returned to full time artwork in
1985 - THE ORNAMENTALISTS, the Art Barn, Washington, DC.
1984 - CELEBRATING ANNIE ALBERS, the Renwick Gallery, National Museum
of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC.
- THE ART OF CRAFTS, Zenith Gallery, Washington, DC.
1980 - KREEGER AWARDS SHOW, Dimmock Gallery, Washington, DC. Three
6' scale sculptures displayed.
1977 - SCULPTURE EXHIBITION, the Embassy of Switzerland, sponsored by the
Corcoran School of Art, Washington, DC.
Jennifer Harper. “Area Designers Celebrate in Style of Annie Albers,”
The Washington Times Magazine, The Washington Times, October 23, 1984.
Nina Hyde. “Playing it Straight, 11 Area Designers at the Renwick,”
The Washington Post, November 12, 1984.
Select Commissioned Original Artwork
Mural: 2.2 x 48' (570 x 26"), National Association of Home Builders, Washington DC. 2005.
Venable LLP, Washington, DC
Awards and Honors:
Honorable Mention. International Dishman Competition.
Dishman Art Museum, Lamar University, Beaumont, TX. 2004.
Fellowship. The National Endowment for the Arts, Washington, DC, 1984.
The Annie Albers Designer Award. The Washington Fashion Group and G Street
Fabrics, presented at the Renwick Gallery, Washington, DC, 1984.
Selected Artist. The ART in Embassies Program, US Department of State. Chosen to have artwork on display at US Embassy abroad, 2005-2008.
MFA, Sculpture, George Washington University, Washington, DC, 1980.
Art and Sculpture classes, the Corcoran School of Art, Washington, DC, 1977-79.
Sculpture class, Sociedad de Bellas Artes, Santiago, Chile, 1976.
MA, BFA, San Francisco College for Women at Lone Mountain, San Francisco, CA, 1976, 1969.
Art and education classes, University for American Studies, Aix-en-Provence, France, 1967.
National Association of Women Artists. New York, NY.
Washington Sculpture Group. Washington, DC.