Kelli Lien

Kelli Lien was born in 1958 and raised on her parents’ hobby farm in the woodland area of northwestern Minnesota.  She developed her love of art, nature, and all animals at an early age.  She has painted routinely since the age of ten.  She credits her mother for always providing her with paints and supplies and never complaining about making a mess.  She began her serious focus on learning watercolor as an adult in the 90’s while living in the Black Hills of South Dakota and raising her two sons.  During this time period, she became proficient with the medium and was active in artist groups that met to learn, share, and exhibit.  She taught watercolor painting to adults, youth, and small children.  Although she took a number of classes from well-known regional watercolorists, she considers herself primarily self-taught.  Kelli has been an award-winning watercolorist for over 15 years and is a signature member of the Red River Watercolor Society.  Kelli received the Artist Fellowship Award from the Region 2 Arts Council in Bemidji for 2017-2018.  During the pandemic that followed, she added book arts to her repertoire.  After taking a wide variety of classes, including printmaking, bookbinding, and creating one-of-a-kind Artist Books, Kelli is on track to achieve her Core Certificate in 2024 through the Minnesota Center for Book Arts.  She is also a published collagist.  Kelli is an enrolled member of the White Earth Nation of the Ojibwe.  She is a wife, mother of two sons and a sweet little girl dog named Stella.  She now lives in the Northwoods of Minnesota, close to where she grew up.

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