Barbi Thomer Niblick
American artist, Barbi Thomer Niblick, was born in Chestnut Hill, PA, and raised in the small town of Souderton, PA. Growing up, Barbi had no interest in painting, instead, her artistic interests were focused on creative writing, collaging, and occasionally drawing. She graduated from Gwynedd Mercy University with a BS in Business Administration. In 2012, at the age of 35, she relocated to Phoenix, AZ where she studied Digital Media at the University for Advancing Technology and discovered her passion for painting.
During a BioArt class, the professor talked about controversial art. The professor told the class that anytime someone scoffed at abstract art and said their child could do it, she challenged them and asked them if it was so easy why they weren’t doing it. That challenge stuck with Barbi and that weekend she picked up her first set of acrylic paints and a canvas. She completed her first painting using only her hands, which has remained her primary technique.
Barbi is best known for her use of bright, vibrant colors in her abstract oil paintings. It is the beauty of space dust, galaxies, clouds, and all things ethereal that inspire her work. When asked why she chose her subject matter, she responded, “I love it - I love seeing images of space. I love looking at the clouds. They evoke wonder and calmness throughout my being. I wanted to translate that love from my imagination onto canvas.”
While Barbi does not have a specific artist that influenced her work, some of her favorite artists are Rothko, Van Gogh, and Yves Klein. She enjoys spending time exploring the works of other artists in galleries and museums, focusing on abstract work from the simple to the complex.
An emotive painter, Barbi often uses painting as a physical and emotional release. "Diagnosed with bipolar 2, I've come to realize a large focus in my work has been to cope with those symptoms." Painting helps to calm and focus her mind. After choosing her color palette, she allows the paint to speak for her as she works the colors onto the canvas. She often paints with her hands because it acts as a conduit to connect the tactile experience to the emotions she feels.
In addition to her business degree, Barbi studied graphic design and digital media in college and has explored the color theory and painting techniques in-depth with private art classes. Much of her growth comes from expanding on what she has learned through experimentation.
Barbi aspires to create beauty that touches, calms, nourishes, and inspires the soul. Her dream is to impact society by bringing awareness to mental health and personality disorders in hopes to help destigmatize them. Because she has personal experience with these issues, her goal is to help others through her artworks. She has opened up the world of emotive painting to those who wish to let go of the emotions and thoughts trapped in their minds through emotive painting classes. Additionally, she plans to promote mental health awareness by creating collections for the benefit of mental health charities. Barbi's goal is to someday establish a grant program using proceeds from her art sales and enable those who are unable to afford mental health treatments to get the therapy they need.