Gertrude Stein Questionnaire: Kelly L. Walker

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Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts (BOPA)

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Made in Baltimore

An Interview with the Baltimore-based Painter and Artstar Custom Paintworks Owner

Kelly L. Walker is a self taught artist and her canvasses express a range of abstract emotions through unusual alchemical reactions. She began painting commercially before learning to paint as a fine artist and these two practices – both an analytical understanding of her medium and a desire to express herself – have created a signature style. Walkers is the owner of Artstar Custom Paintworks, a Baltimore based decorative painting and faux finishing company founded in 2002. She has painted many a familiar Baltimore interior and her clients have also flown her to other, more exotic locations to work her faux finishing magic.

As a fine artist, Walker paints with “zeal and confidence, committing spontaneous reflections of her mood and emotions to canvas.”  Walker’s abstract paintings demonstrate the techniques, textures, and patterns she employs as a professional decorative painter. Utilizing a wide range of atypical painting materials, her works are intricately layered and her surfaces defy explanation, calling reference to landscape, graffiti, and color fields.



Name: Kelly L. Walker

Media: All kinds of paint, paint sponges, regular brooms, cheesecloth, soap, graphite,gilding materials, laquer, roofing tar, street sweeping brooms

Studio: Mt. Vernon / Bromo Tower District

Occupation: Decorative Painter, Owner of ArtStar Custom Paintworks

Obsessive collections: Framed bugs and tattoos

Currently reading: Brad Meltzer’s The President’s Shadow

Coolest place you’ve ever lived or travelled to: Montreal

Hobbies or leisure activities: Cycling

Favorite food to eat at home: Chicken & Sweet Potatoes

Favorite food to eat out: The venison at Volt in Frederick – a sophisticated take on meat & potatoes! For something quick, the pork bun at the Bun Shop.

Favorite beverage: Cold Brew from Dooby’s

Political leanings: I am a mixed bag of political views, really, but I guess you could say that I identify myself as “independent”

Favorite baltimore spot to hang out: My studio. When I’m there and I’m working on paintings, it feels so good to be in the zone.

Favorite artist, living or dead: Andy Warhol and Grace Hartigan

Movie that sums up the current state of your life: The Goonies, because every day is an adventure for me!

Favorite bad habit: Spending Money – particularly on tattoos and things for my house.

Mantra or favorite quote: Start where you are, Use what you have, Do what you can.


See Kelly’s work in person at the following area locations:

  • Volt (288 N. Market St.  Frederick, MD): until September 4th
  • Aggio (5335 Wisconsin Ave, NW Washington DC)
  • Ware House 518 (518 N. Charles St.  Baltimore, MD): until mid-September

Check out her feature in Baltimore Magazine.

Find her online:






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