Most of this exhibition was painted in my Brooklyn studio after I returned home from Old San
Juan, Puerto Rico after sheltering-in-place there for the first five months of the pandemic.
The bright beauty of Puerto Rico, its magical skies and candy-colored streets, etched onto my
vision in Spring of 2020. This Caribbean palette then made its way into my current paintings of
flowers native to my home in the Northeast.
In 2021, I celebrated each season of blossoms- from pansies to daffodils to peonies to roses,
and more! During my brief painting time in Maine in summer 2021, I painted the wildflowers of
Maine from my seaside porch- cosmos, zinnias, snapdragons, and day lilies. Life in 2020 and
2021 was characterized by isolation and lack of travel. Despite this, I found the months of
extended studio time allowed an adventurous kind of experimentation in paint handling. My
work experienced an evolution toward abstraction; my brushstrokes became objects in and of
I dreamt of Caribbean skies, so I set up backdrops that simulated roiling tropical clouds. I missed
the long summer days painting the foggy harbors of Maine, so I looked for reflections in my
enamel tabletop to convey the effects of a watery surface. I catch glimpses of the New York City
skyline as I move through my days in Brooklyn, so in the studio I gathered glass bottles that
shimmer together like urban skyscrapers.
Still life becomes a visual metaphor for the places I see in my mind’s eye. Seascapes and
cityscapes, conjured on an intimate scale, became the “tablescapes” I then populated with each
day’s bounty of fruits and flowers.
– Christine Lafuente