Joan Tarbell Plato

Artists’ Statement/Background


Painter, Photographer, Bookmaker and Poet,  Plato strives to bring both conscious and unconscious feelings and imaginings to the surface.  She merges her love of words  with art and creates art and writings that evolve from their intersection.  She is a lover of our natural world, an environmentalist  who seeks to  halt events that  damage our beautiful  land and waters and threaten our environment. 

One of her art series, "  Pear Abstractions" , depicts pears in different environments, revealing fascinating insights as these pears live within highly  varied areas, and interact with multiple entities.  Plato loves color and  layered design which gives her paintings depth and vibrancy.  Her images are unique and insightful  and with her use of geometrics can contain layered stories of human emotions and experiences.  

Her childhood was spent on the shores of Lake Ontario where her love of water and nature originated. She has a fond love of history, especially the art of ancient civilizations,  Native American culture and  Egyptian cultures.  Aspects of these influences can be seen throughout some of her paintings and handmade books. 


Plato, who had a successful Computer Science Career, has been an artist for over twenty years. She works mainly in acrylic and through visible images strives to show the invisible.

She  studied at the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) and with several internationally known workshop artists. She is a juried signature member of the International Society of Experimental Artists, the Baltimore Watercolor Society, the Potomac Watercolor Society and the National League of American Pen Women.  Plato has had several one person exhibitions and has received numerous awards. Her paintings are in both private and corporate collections. 

Art is using all my senses imaginatively while producing images that speak of interrelated experiences.