Francesca 'Frahn' Koerner
Francesca 'Frahn' Koerner

Francesca 'Frahn' Koerner

(504) 261-7227
Francesca "Frahn" Koerner is a mixed media artist who was born and educated in New Orleans, Louisiana. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in painting with a minor in photography from Tulane University. In 1997, she received a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of New Orleans, again majoring in painting with a minor in photography. Koerner has taught both at Tulane University and the University of New Orleans. She is currently based and working in New Orleans, LA. Her work has been shown both nationally and internationally and can be viewed on the web at

Koerner grew up in New Orleans and spent time exploring the natural areas along the Mississippi Gulf coast. The visual and cultural environment of the region has been an influence in her work. Colors from the semi tropical area and rhythmic patterns inspired by those in nature have been repetitive motifs in her paintings. An early Catholic upbringing, spiritual symbolism, Buddhist Philosophy, and mystical experiences inspire her. She uses imagery such as water, boats, horses, and the human figure. Her symbolic work alludes to magic realism and a continuing interest in metaphysical evolution. She could be categorized as fitting into the Psychedelic or Optical and Visionary Art movement.

In 2008 Koerner co created "The Apostolic Project.” This Collaborative mixed media Installation involved filling a flooded and gutted house in the 9th Ward area of New Orleans with thousands of hand folded paper boats. Koerner recently finished a photography/puzzle series. Her photographs of rituals and the natural world were made into puzzles. She then rearranged pieces of the puzzles in order to visually break up the space of the image and to layer conceptual meaning.

Koerner has been included in the “Project to Document the Lives of Newcomb Educated Artists.” In 2001, She was one of the artists representing the USA for the Biennale Internazionale Dell’ Arte Contemporanea in Florence, Italy. In 2002, she was represented in the Contemporary Arts Center Show “Digital Louisiana.” This show was curated by David S. Rubin, past Curator of Visual Arts for the Contemporary Arts Center in New Orleans, Louisiana and now the Brown Foundation Curator for Contemporary Art in San Antonio, Texas. The exhibit showcased the Contemporary Fine Art of many Louisiana born artists who incorporate the use of a computer in their artwork. From 2002-2006 Koerner’s work was exhibited in the Louisiana Governor’s Mansion. She was an American Artist chosen for the 2004 Austrian Artist Exchange Group show held in Innsbruck, Austria. In 2006 she was awarded a two month Artist Residency from the Santa Fe Art Institute of Santa Fe in New Mexico. It was funded in part by the Pollock-Krasner Foundation. In 2008-2009 she was awarded a yearlong studio residency at Louisiana ArtWorks, funded by the Joan Mitchell Foundation. In 2009 she was one of 18 alumni who were picked to be included in the University of New Orleans’s show H x W x D – Thirty Years of MFA at UNO. In 2010 Koerner was nominated by her state to be included on, which is an online resource “spotlighting outstanding artists living and working in the region.”

“As a painter, Koerner uses the computer as a “virtual sketchbook,” a tool for fleshing out ideas. In developing a painting, Koerner may create as many as one hundred computer mockups in which she experiments with multiple possibilities for color, scale, and composition. She begins a painting by pouring paint onto a canvas or wood panel, photographs the initial layer, and scans the image onto a computer. Next she integrates imagery from a variety of sources in her everyday environment into the mix, and manipulates the visual data. She then photographs the painting again and repeats the process until satisfied with the results. A finished painting is then based on the computer data but never replicates it.

Koerner is as interested in the layering of meanings as she is of forms, and the amalgam of images in her paintings represents a personal lexicon of emotional, psychological, and spiritual symbolism. Memory and nostalgia, for example are reflected in decorative patterning that she copied from an architectural motif at a church that she visited in Budapest, while the recurring image of a horse refers to her experience of riding horses during childhood.”

- David Rubin; “Digital Louisiana” catalogue (2002)