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Carol Dalton

Known for her quiet, meditative works, Carol Dalton's mixed media works speak of solitude and the natural world. References to land and ocean, weather and growth, create the language of her visual vocabulary. Dalton's fascination with subtle texture, layering of materials, patterns in nature and the art of primitive cultures were all influences in this available work.

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As a child, I explored ocean life and the coastal foothills in California, lived on an avocado ranch, and spent time in the garden. Spending time in nature influenced my use of color, tactile application, and subject matter.

Where do you dream of going? 

Deep into the sea.

What artists influenced your work? 

Agnes Martin, Anslem Kiefer, Hannelore Baron, Eva Hesse. Georgia O’Keefe was one of the first artists I was influenced by back when I was in high school, and she still to this day. I am also quite inspired by Milton Avery and Joan Mitchell. I love Milton Avery's shapes and Joan Mitchell’s energy.

Name three things on your bucket list.

Traveling in the Southwest.
Visiting my brother and sister in law in Australia.
Having an unlimited amount of wood panels.

What was one of the best experiences of your life?

Having the freedom to express myself. Maintaining a studio has to the best life long experience for me.


Carol Dalton grew up in Southern California. She explored ocean life and the coastal foothills before enrolling in The Santa Barbara Art Institute, a part of Brooks Institute. Majoring in painting from 1971-1974 and receiving several scholarships, she also studied printmaking and ceramics. Her exposure to nature has had a lasting effect on the artist. Her work has become more nuanced over time reflecting her quiet yet emotional connection to the environment. Natural colors, patterns, reflections, and texture inform her work. Carol builds up her paintings on wood panels with layers of paper and water based paints, scraping, sanding, marking, until distilled with a powerful presence.

Dalton has work included in the Crocker Art Museum, the Monterey Art Museum, and corporate collections including Kaiser Permanente. Carol’s work is included in many private collections, locally and abroad. Carol lives in Benicia, California with her husband and maintains her studio along the Carquinez Strait.


Why Make Art by Hedi Desuyo

Artweek review by Frank Cebulski

Benicia Herald review by Keri Luiz

Benicia Magazine review by Beth Steinman

Kolaj Magazine review by Nancy Flagg

Sacramento Bee review by Alan Dismuke 

Carol Dalton lives and works in Benicia, California