Anne Marie Karlsen employs themes of irony and humor in her work. Cultural oddities are juxtaposed with factual evidence. Originally appearing abstract and graphic from a distance, upon closer examination work reveals readable, recognizable imagery with form, symmetry and interrelated connectivity. Karlsen earned her MFA and MA from the University of Wisconsin–Madison and a BFA from Michigan State University. She currently teaches at Santa Monica College. She received the Americans for the Arts Public Art Year in Review Award in 2011 and 2009, and has consulted for the City of West Hollywood and the City of Long Beach.