Home Art Artists Artist Spotlight on Lora Barnhiser


Meet local artist Lora Barnhiser, who is originally from Bellville Ohio and is a Phoenix transplant that creates an exciting variety of paintings, jewelry and more. 


She has also been a high school art teacher for over ten years busy molding the minds of our future artists. She is an environmentalist, avid hiker and camper going on to say, “I try to live an eco friendly life and enjoy maintaining that idea in my art by using upcycled materials." A skilled artist in her own right who was traditionally trained in the arts, Barnhiser opts to work very minimalistic with discarded wood, paint brush and often a soldering iron, utilizing a technique known as pyrography.


Her work highlights beautiful colors, amazing textures and distinctive patterns both found in the wood itself and those added through wood burning by Barnhiser. Also she offers a variety of jewelry, leather goods, vintage prints, pet portraits and custom commissions. Currently she favors working with small pieces of discarded wood that she calls her “Wooden Misfit Art” stating  “I don’t often change their size or shape as I enjoy the challenge of working with what I’m given, many have knots or “imperfections” that serve as my jumping off point of inspiration. The inspiration behind her artwork comes from “the challenge of working with what materials land at my feet and the optimist in me sees the lemon and likes to turn it to art.” 


Barnhiser found her love of art in high school continuing her passion through college where she received her Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Fine and Studio Arts and Art Education from Bowling Green State University. Her artwork has been featured in a few local publications including Phoenix New Times, Visual Art Source and YabYum Music and Arts.


Creating art for herself and for gifts eventually Barnhiser finally began to sell and exhibit her artwork locally this year starting with Phoenix Flea, Phoestivus, and Made Boutique. Barnhiser was able to have her first gallery exhibition this past November at Shade Gallery at the monOrchid in juried group exhibition titled “TEN: Modern Abstract” which showcased two brilliant wood assemblages adorned in an abstract design and mounted to the wall. She also was invited to exhibit her work in a 90+ person show in at {9} The Gallery titled “Tiny Works| Tiny Dances”.


She is busy in her studio preparing for the upcoming Phoenix Flea on March 5, 2016 and she will also have a large piece on display in the soon to open "Nook Kitchen" located in the new Hilton Garden Inn Hotel in Downtown Phoenix this February. Want to learn more about the lovely and talented Lora Barnhiser then visit her online at: http://www.wholegrainflair.com/ and be sure to follow her on Instagram @whole.grain.flair. *Images courtesy and copyright of artist Lora Barnhiser.