Karen Louise Carter


Karen Louise Carter, age 66, May 8, 1955 – June 3, 2021, died peacefully at Alive Hospice in Nashville, TN.
Karen is preceded in death by her mother, Angela Morel, step-dad, Tom Morel, and father Louis Kempf, and survived by her sisters Judy Bush of Mt. Juliet, TN, and Joyce (Don) Grace of McMurray, PA, and brothers Ron (Dot) Kempf of The Villages, FL, and Kevin Kempf of Mulvane, KS. She is also survived by nieces & nephews: Jennie Towler, Jef (Stacey) Kempf, Mike (Jessie) Bush, Lisa (Tim) Engles, Kevin (Shana) Paulison, and Maria (Cutter) Thompson, as well as many special grand-nieces and grand-nephews, cousins, and close family friends. Karen will be dearly missed by her beloved community at Art & Soul Studio, her kind neighbors and friends, and her exceptional helpers from The Estuary, and Gilda’s Club, in Nashville. A special note of gratitude is offered for the attentive care provided by the nurses, physicians, and staff at Saint Thomas West and Alive Hospice.

Karen, a spirited and prolific visual artist, was born in Louisville, KY, raised in Nashville, TN, and earned her art degree from Austin Peay State University. A diligent and detail-oriented hard worker with boundless energy, Karen held numerous jobs throughout her life, some of which included a factory supervisor, licensed massage therapist, art studio facilities manager, skilled handy-woman and house painter, personal organizer and assistant, pet-sitter, and Jill-of-all-trades. Karen’s painting, collage, and mixed media artwork has been featured in local gallery shows, artisan fairs, and fundraisers.

According to Karen, her life was significantly enriched when she discovered Art & Soul Studio and began studying under her beloved teacher & mentor, Arunima Orr. It was then, Karen claimed, that Art & Soul became her artistic & spiritual home. She was a devoted, longtime member of the cooperative community, and was surrounded by her loving art-companions during her illness.

A graveside service will be held on Tuesday, June 8, 1:00 pm at Larkspur Conservation in Sumner County, TN, about one hour north of Nashville; those attending should dress for weather and a wilderness hike, rain or shine, and meet at the trailhead at 1:00 pm — at 155 Bear Carr Road, Westmoreland, TN, 37186.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Karen’s honor may be made to Art & Soul Studio at https://www.artandsoulnashville.com. Those interested may view samples of Karen’s work and read about her, in her own words, on a recent blog post at

Arrangements Entrusted to: Sumner Funeral & Cremation, Gallatin (615)452-9059 www.sumnerfuneral.com

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