The portraits of buildings where the structure is visibly vulnerable to the elements use the forms of decay as a testament to histories of use and misuse. The colors in the paintings, real and imagined, bring life to what some people might call an eyesore. The paintings are executed on unprimed canvas to allow the acrylic paint to bleed into the cloth. Layers of transparent color achieve a watercolor effect.
The structures much like the paintings record their condition in a language of stain. They capture the beauty of things forgotten by time: imperfect, impermanent and incomplete.
Bonita LeFlore is an American artist who is best known for her large paintings referencing the architecture of forgotten places. Influenced by the color field paintings of Helen Frankenthaler and the vivid palette of Joan Mitchell, Bonita finds working with acrylic paint on unprimed canvas a medium that lends itself to a transparency that gives her subject matter life. She combines watercolor-like layering with pastel markings in a distinctive combination of mediums.
After early retirement from the advertising industry in New York City, she moved to San Francisco where she revisited her love of painting, something she had put aside during the years of career and raising a family. It was in San Francisco she started writing a novel that has now been published, as have several short stories in various literary journals. She is currently working on a second book. You can read more of her writing on Telling Stories here.
Returning to the East Coast, Bonita found the North Shore of Massachusetts an ideal location for working and living with her growing extended family.
Bonita studied at the Art Students League in New York, graduated from Syracuse University with a BFA in painting, and attended Pratt Institute’s Masters program for painting. Her work is in many private collections across the United States and internationally. She has had solo exhibits at the Hills Gallery, Newburyport, MA and the Firehouse Center for the Arts in Newburyport, MA. Her work has been shown at Galatea Fine Art Gallery, Boston, MA, The French Institute in Boston, Fountain Street Art Gallery, Framingham MA, 3S Art Space, Portsmouth, NH, Charles Fine Art Gallery, Gloucester, MA and The Barn Gallery, Ogunquit, ME. She is a member of the National Association of Women Artists and NAWAMA.
Bonita served on the Board of Directors of the Newburyport Art Association from 2011-2017.
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