Pandora Nash-Karner bio/cv page

Pandora Nash-Karner

Pandora Nash-Karner

Living up to her name from Greek Mythology — Pandora —was created by the gods as “the all-gifted one” and was formed out of clay. How appropriate.

This modern day Pandora earned Design and Fine Arts Degrees from the California State University, San Jose and the University of Nevada. She has been a graphic designer and photographer for decades beginning her career in the San Francisco Bay Area. She created her own firm, Pandora & Company, in 1982 and worked with a variety of national, regional and local clients including the American Medical Association, Canon Camera, California Life Underwriters Association, the American Society of Landscape Architects and a U.S. Papal visit. Her work includes design and production of corporate identity packages and books for famous photographers including: George Lepp and Presidential photographer, Joseph Sohm; a Macro Photography book for Canon Camera and Lepp’s definitive book on the California Golden Poppy, a rich tribute to California’s heritage and its disappearing wild lands.

She has received national and international honors and awards for her design work for since the 1990s, and her photographs have appeared on the covers and interiors of national and regional magazines and newspapers. She has lectured in the United States and Australia.

Pandora has served in elected office, has been selected as Citizen of the Year, Woman of the Year, Kiwanian of the Year, San Luis Obispo County Volunteer of the Year by the Economic Opportunity Commission, and received the Mary Rhode Award from the League of Women Voters. She has served on numerous non-profit Boards of Directors and has been a San Luis Obispo County Park Commissioner since 1991.

Her love of making art runs deep, going back to elementary school when she was sent to the principal’s office for drawing all over her math papers. Despite people telling her “you can’t draw a sky that is yellow and trees that are purple” she survived the confines of society and creates in a profoundly personal way guided by her own gifted muse. Her fine arts degree centered on ceramics under the tutelage of Mike McCollum, an eminent clay artist who apprenticed with Peter Voulkos. Now, as a direct outgrowth of her formal education and 3 decades of design work, she resumed working in clay in the mid-2000s and has studied with Bob Nichols, a regionally renowned ceramic artist in California's central coast.

An early proponent of using Photoshop and Illustrator as art tools, Pandora combines design, photography and imagination in her digital artwork. “Is digital art, art?” people ask. “Art is art,” states Pandora, “regardless of the process that takes the artist from concept to completion.”

Pandora’s clay and digital art have appeared in several recent shows in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Counties and making art keeps her engaged daily. From designer to artist is a natural leap. Her “second career” work is proving she is one of the most exciting emerging artists on the Central Coast.

She lives in Cuesta-By-The-Sea, Los Osos, California, with Prince Charming — her landscape architect husband, Gary — and a yellow lab named Keesha. She practices (and practices) on a custom-made Baranik guitar. She has sailed over 40,000 off-shore miles mostly on the Alaska Eagle, a 65-foot Sparkman Stephens sloop, exploring remote islands in the Pacific. She holds a US Coast Guard Captain’s license and her sailboat, an Islander named "Califia" (trimmed in purple naturally), rests on a mooring in Morro Bay.

Pandora Nash-Karner in studio

“Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time.”
—Thomas Merton

Silk screen and carving on ceramic platter

“Creativity is that marvelous capacity to grasp mutually distinct realities and draw a spark from their juxtaposition.”
—Max Ernst

in studio tools and brushes

“Art, at its best, is the representation of your very own soul, a reminder of who and what you truly are and therefore can become." ”
—Ken Wilber

ceramic tools for sculpture and functional ware

“Who ever said that pleasure wasn’t functional? ”
—Charles Eames