California Native Flowers in Art - Roan Victor

Something I rarely do - go out to see a show in a small art gallery - I did, a couple nights ago. The reason: the artist uses California native flowers in her art - representational portraits, where the face from the eyes up is mostly replaced by - intense bouquets of native flowers, like the fuchsia, fremontia, and aster above. The show's title - Out of Sight Out of Mind - has a lot of possible meanings and I like rolling those around as I look at the paintings.

The background is generally a scene from the artist's daily surroundings, in San Jose. Surroundings bereft of native plants!

OK the other reason I attended the show is that I know the artist, Roan Victor (her name is pronounced roe-ann). She's below left. She's a friend of my daughter, on the right. That's my grand baby greeting Roan.

I love the colors and style. The - Matisse like? - background. I love portraits in general, pondering the personality of the person painted.

The show was well attended.

 Don't you think this guy looks very stable, very solid, with his compact head-shaped array of sticky monkeyflower?

This is a detail from the painting shown earlier - I spent a long time figuring out what repressed humorous thought was going on in the slanted world of this appealing clarkia person.

Another set of smaller works showed just the person... Like his matilija poppy lady, very swishy and with that upright soaring attitude of the poppy itself.

Whereas here we have an off-kilter ceanothus girl with a different attitude.

I love the elegance the cloche-like headpiece of the oxalis lady.

I'll leave you to your own responses - I'm still enjoying exploring my own. If you want to go, the show is at the Empire Seven Studios in San Jose.


ryan said…
Those are great. I bet the artist has an interesting garden at home. It gets me thinking about the personalities of the plants as well as the people.
Country Mouse said…
On FB Roan added this comment about her work, in response to to a friend's question:

The California natives symbolize, with conscious effort, the natural growth of imagination and inspiration from mundane things around us. In some of the work i also tried to personify the plants according to their characteristics.

Thanks, Roan!
any chance of a glimpse of her own garden? Is it Californian natives?
Country Mouse said…
I don't know if Roan has a garden. She has friends who are native plant garden designers. One thing I noticed - there are no native plants in the environments of her paintings. The contrast seems to be part of what the art is saying.