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- AboutJenny Floravita was born to be an artist. She began her studies in painting, drawing, music and dance as a small child, excelling in all. Her life in the San Francisco Bay Area afforded her great exposure to the arts. Jenny won numerous awards as a young artist including four California Governor’s Medallions and four California State Seals, two each for art and dance. After receiving several scholarships, Jenny went on to study and receive her formal art degree through University of California, Santa Cruz. She lived and worked in Santa Cruz as a graphic designer and fine art painter for several years before re-locating to her family’s home town in the Delta. Since 2000, Jenny Floravita’s fine art career has blossomed. She has exhibited in numerous galleries and high-end art festivals. She paints island scenes and tropical flowers in both oil and watercolor. Jenny’s journey in reverse glass painting began in the early summer of 2007 and since then she has added her beautiful custom glass painted chandeliers to her line of oil and watercolor paintings.
- ExhibitionsMarch 10-13, 2011 La Quinta Arts Festival for info and to purchase tickets: 706-564-1244 www.lqaf.com Please check back in the spring of 2011 for additional events.
Yes, my art form has it’s roots in a very old art form and yes, it is rare—these are realizations that are not groundbreaking to me. There is a lot of blood, sweat and tears behind my work, especially in the earlier years. It is a very challenging calling to choose to pursue the life of a professional artist, let alone choose an art form that has a lot of industrial elements included. Today I am very successful but I think many people would be surprised to realize my climb in the art world has be very long coming and it has been filled with many years where I did well enough to support my budding (expensive) business but not well enough to thrive. So my success is very well earned.
I have spent my youth on my craft. I went directly to college to pursue an art degree at age 17. I was already accomplished as an artist by age 15/16—having been awarded 4 California State Seals and 4 Governor’s Medallions by the age of 17. These were (and might still be) the highest honors that can be bestowed upon a high school student in the arts in California. In college, I completed my undergraduate courses and unrelated major courses by the end of my freshman year—by spring quarter I was taking the upper division courses. Where many waited until their senior year to take advanced drawing, I did it as a freshman and in fact took a year’s worth. By the time I was a junior I had done so many upper division classes that it was time to try the graduate program of Science Illustration—where I took classes for a year, maybe completing 2/3 of the classes that the real graduate students took to complete their degrees.
Well, those years were long ago now, and I do consider myself still young…but they are the backbone of who I have become today. My middle years through college and right after were also spent working as a graphic designer—a skill set that I use almost every day as I am my own marketing machine. It took a lot of work to get to the point where I was able to walk away from the securities of graphic design to launch and feed my budding fine art career. And yes, I sacrificed not having a family early—that is another big distinction in me and it was a sacrifice.
So I write this open letter to all the artists who look at me and wonder how I arrived at where I am today. I am flattered when artists contact me but I am also very busy and my time resources are scarce as are my emotional energies (and of all people, I do love speaking with artists). My work in creating and showing my chandeliers is very demanding. This is a most rewarding life that I have and I wouldn’t trade it but it has demanded sacrifices thus the literal blood, sweat and yes, many tears through the years. Heck, I could have a lot of those elements between now and the end of next week, depending on the wind conditions at La Quinta, if I hurt myself setting up my massive booth, knocking myself out getting in and out of my trailer (and I’ve fallen out, too), the dozen dolly loads of display equipment and weights, steaks, rebar for wind.
To artists and with much kindness and Aloha (as I know others would not be so kind): please understand that my work is my livelihood and this is true for any working professional artist who has a unique and innovative art form. Because my work is special and because it has a part of my soul it’s like giving a part of myself with each chandelier and I do think most people require a part of the artist to invest in their work, I do understand this and give as much as I possibly can. Good thing we are creative people with abundance of soul!!! For now, I feel the need to hold my work’s creative soul and energies close. I think having expressed my life’s journey in this light, it will be easier to accept.
Woodsy Green is a new reverse painted chandelier with green and earth tone colors. It’s a very lavishly layered painting that features grasses and ferns and palm fronds and a warm gold colored bottom. The flowers that are interspersed with the greens are accent colors. White daisies, columbine flowers, Texas blue bells, sage, Indian paint brushes and sunflowers are just a few of the featured wildflowers.
I love creating hand painted chandeliers with this general theme—it’s a chandelier concept that I can paint endlessly. All of my reverse painted chandeliers are originals. It’s a very enjoyable subject matter for me to paint. There is another take on my ‘green’ theme on my website that features lush exotic, tropical green leaves and tropical flowers in pink and white hues. It is called Lush Waters and I may elaborate a bit more on that piece next. It is also a brand new chandelier.
This reverse painted chandelier is crafted here in my studio. The glass is formed and cold worked here and my fixtures are hand forged and welded—these are not Home Deopt type fixtures, they are entirely hand crafted and my glass bowls are much stronger and thicker than what you see in the glass bowl fixtures big box stores, it’s a huge difference in terms of quality. And my work is about quality, attention to detail and artistry.
The forged fixture style that you see here is called ‘Standard’ and is about 20″ tall plus the length of the chain. My ‘Ornate’ fixture has more curves and is 29″ tall and goes well over dining tables and in rooms that have a more formal touch. My ‘Contemporary Swirl’ is 23″ in height and features my infinity/vortex swirl and straight arms—is simple yet contemporary, thus the name. All of my reverse painted chandeliers come with however much chain you need and if you need a really long drop, I will custom wire a fixture to your specifications. Also included is the ceiling canopy and the lights—so my reverse painted chandeliers arrive installation ready.
This is the second custom reverse painted lamp shade that I completed via commission for a couple in Florida who had broken one of a pair of treasured painted lamp shades. The shade that broke was a mass-produced type of shade, not done by any particular artist and probably done in a factory overseas but it’s Middle Eastern imagery had sentiment to my clients. It was really important to me to capture the concepts that represent desert life for my fellow Mediterranean friends.
As this was one of two shades that would be illuminated in the same room, we had determined that both would be in the same color palate. I had just completed a reverse painted shade with grapes, their cat’s face and two red birds and now it was time to use the same colors for this desert shade. We incorporated a camel and an oasis scene and palms and those flowed onto a side that had close-up pictures of my client’s flowers from their yard. The overall effect was both exotic and modern—there was nothing stuffy about the painting in this glass lamp shade.
The picture above shows an inside view of the scene. I think the hardest part about these two pieces was waiting for the paint to dry! Oh, and I should mention that a lot of time and thought did go into this reverse painted lamp shade and I think that it shows!
These two shades are good examples of commissions that arose out of tragic circumstances, being the breaking of a beloved lamp. At one point my clients exclaimed that they were almost happy that the one lamp was broken because they had a chance to design and create these two special reverse painted lamp shades. That made my day and I was very happy that my clients were please with their lamps. One more thing, these were installed onto two matching bases that the clients owned and I provided the decorative and functional hardware needed to fit and secure the shade. So if you have a lamp base that you’d like to use, send me pictures and I’ll let you know if it’s possible and what I can do to help make it work.
Just released a new Geisha reverse painted chandelier in my Honolulu Beauties Series. This is a 24″ diameter piece and features one ‘Geisha’ face. My Honolulu Beauties are inspired by the picture brides that went to Hawaii in the early 1900s. They left everything they knew behind in their homelands—their family, their foods, their climate and ways of life to start fresh with a husband that most of them had never met. All they had were the pictures that were sent over from prospective men who had toiled for years in the sugar cane plantations. It could take many years to save up enough money to send for a bride so most men were not as young as their pictures suggested and this was, of course, distressful for many brides.
Some would turn around and go back to Japan and others would stick it out to carve a new life in Hawaii. The tropical flowers that I’ve painted in this piece are lush and exotic and pay homage to a new life in the islands. I think that with time, many of these women did find happiness in this new world and many settled in and with them, they brought the traditions of their land which are now intermingled in the islands. Hawaii is a land where many peoples of the Pacific Rim have come with dreams of a new life.
A favorite section in this new reverse painted chandelier is to the left of the Geisha face. Exotic orchids, plumerias, gingers and leaves create a burst of energy and movement. Cherry blossoms shower our Geshia. Plumerias line the bottom of the chandelier. This is a very colorful reverse painted chandelier. Stay tuned for another Honolulu Beauties Series release, a 28″ reverse painted chandelier drying now!
I’m excited to announce that Circles of Sedona, an abstract reverse hand painted chandelier, is a 2013 NICHE Awards Finalist! I’ve know this since the fall but am now just getting the time to share.
This abstract, hand painted chandelier was made by me. I create and fire my glass bowls here in my studio. This piece has a diameter of 24″ and I designed the fixture ring to be large so that the painted glass bowl sits deep into the iron. ring. Each of my glass bowls start out as flat architectural grade glass that gets cut and then slumped in my kiln. After annealing and cooling the edges are sanded and the the glass is sand blasted so that there is no glare when looking at the painting—the sand blasting gives a nice diffused effect (though it is my least favorite task in creating the glass bowls).
My fixture design is “new” from 2012 and I designed it from client feedback. I needed a fixture design that would be contemporary and flexible yet simple and it also needed to reflect the ongoing themes in my abstract reverse hand painted chandeliers. The ‘circles’ and swirls symbolize eternity and life. They are profound to me and I am inspired endlessly by them. This particular reverse hand painted chandelier, Circles of Sedona, was sold through Kuivato Glass Gallery last fall.
This award is important because my work rarely fits into categories easily for awards so I don’t often get pats of the back as some of my other artists friends do. I ‘fuse’ glass are with painting and metalwork. My work spans multiple mediums that only seem to grow larger with the years. I feel that this is a very simple design in terms of my hand forged and welded fixture but yet it’s contemporary and fits my work well. It also offers a different look for my collectors who would prefer straight arms versus the scrolls and bends of my other fixture designs. My infinity/swirl/vortex symbol ties in well with the abstract paintings in my reverse hand painted chandeliers. This was a really lovely chandelier!
Cat Got The Grapes is the unofficial title that I gave to this commissioned, reverse hand painted lamp shade that was created for a couple who live in Florida. Every year I meet people who have unfortunately broken a painted lamp, usually an antique. The broken lamp in question for this client was not so much an antique but it had sentiment for my clients. My clients owned two, identical desert themed shades that were painted in a flat style that is so different from how I paint that initially I was hesitant to consider the project.
First I had to determine if I could match the shape of the glass that was broken. Turns out, I was unable to do that. The shade was paper thin and flared out at the ends and was also made for an unusual base. My reverse hand painted lamp shades begin here in my studio, with me creating and firing the glass shade shape. My glass shades are 18″ in diameter and will fit most any Tiffany style base with a few pieces of additional hardware that are provided by me.
Early on in the project we determined that I would make two shades and that each would be different but that the color palate would be the same. We decided to use the colors in my Vineyard Romance Series. The first shade would have grapes, leaves, two red birds and a portrait of my client’s cat. The second shade would have a desert scene to celebrate my client’s Lebanese heritage and also incorporate flowers from her garden.
Cat Got The Grapes was a more developed theme in my mind so it made sense to do this revere hand painted lamp shade first. Normally I do not paint pet portraits but I decided to take a chance on this one and as you can see, the cat turned out lovely! He is forever immortalized in my client’s shade and will forever have a part in their home. The base that this shade lives on came from my client. It was a lovely camel base and she owned two! So each shade would have the same base.
Circles of Promise is an abstract, reverse painted chandelier featuring my new contemporary iron fixture design. The coloring in this painted chandelier is very vibrant. I am the artist and my name is Jenny Floravita. All of my reverse painted chandeliers are painted by me in my studio in the San Francisco Bay Area. My signature abstract painting style has become as loved by my collectors as my exotic flower chandeliers.
My glass bowls are created here in my studio. My new iron fixture style incorporates the swirl and vortex element that runs throughout my abstract themed chandeliers. My abstract reverse painted chandeliers are works of art for the ceiling. The rods that hold the glass are not lamp rods—they are solid steel rods that we fabricate here in my studio. This is a clean design that I’ve been working on for some time and it’s very relevant to my abstracts.
A lot of work and craftsmanship goes into each of my reverse painted chandeliers. Painting and creating these glass chandeliers unique works is a labor of love. 24″ diameter refers to the size of the glass bowl and is a very good size for most people and in fact, it is a standard size for many bowl-shaped chandeliers. I’d also like to point out that because my glass bowls are made here in my studio, they are a whole different animal to what you see in the big home depot type stores—my glass bowls are 1/4″ thick! They aren’t wafer thin.
If you look at this reverse painted chandelier’s page here you will see 21 detail images. The reason why I’m showing so many detail images is because Circles of Promise is a very complex chandelier painting. Lighting is hard to photograph so know that my reverse painted chandeliers are even lovelier in person.
If you are looking for a contemporary, decorative lighting fixture then know that all of my reverse painted chandeliers are original works of art in their own right—no two are alike.
I’m so excited!!! This has been a long time coming but I’m finally able to say that I have a new forged-fixture design option for my abstract reverse painted glass chandeliers. The fixture I’m showing here is my new Circles of Color chandelier. You can see more details on it’s page: http://floravitalights.com/portfolio/circles-of-color-abstract-reverse-painted-chandelier
The swirl element ties into my swirl and circles theme. It would look lovely on my Vortex piece as well and can also be paired with any of my other painted chandeliers if you want a reverse painted glass chandelier for your room yet need it to be a contemporary lighting fixture. It’s contemporary and clean in design, hangs lovely and gets away from the Tuscan and traditional scrolled iron designs of my other fixtures.
When you are a busy working artist as I am, every new idea can take a while before a design materializes into a piece you can touch. As clean and simple as this design is, I spent the better part of this past half year thinking about it and drawing different options before I was able to make it into the iron fixture you see today. The objective was to design a fixture that would fit my contemporary abstract chandeliers that would have a main element that would tie into the motifs that I like to use in my glass paintings. You will see more of these fixtures accompanying my abstract reverse painted glass chandeliers.
With the Summer Danville Fine Arts Faire behind me, it’s time to leave to deliver work to my fine art glass gallery in Santa Monica, which sells contemporary glass art for some of the nation’s most established artists. Yes, I’ll be sharing the info for this gallery upon my return—when I’m not in such a hurry. I am very excited to be represented by them! So, yesterday I spent the entire day wiring, balancing and hand painted each of my forged iron fixtures. I personally hang and double, triple check each fixture for my reverse painted chandeliers myself to make sure that they hang straight and look as perfect as possible before they ship to you. My work is, after all, hand-crafted, hand-forged, hand-painted—you get the gist! Now I’m about to hand-pack a bunch of pieces carefully into my truck for the journey down to sunny Southern California!
Sunflowers in Laguna is one of the reverse painted chandeliers that this gallery will carry. It’s a lovely piece with sunny colors, birds of paradise, sunflowers and other tropical and coastal California flowers—perfect for a beach side home. Actually, I think I’d better hand-wash the truck first!!! Can’t have it looking dusty going down to Santa Monica to delivery my painted chandeliers…
This past weekend was very hot at the annul Summer Danville Fine Arts Faire but I’m proud to say that it was still a great success. Despite 108 degree weather on Saturday and slightly cooler weather—but still hot—on Sunday I sold several significant pieces. The reverse painted chandelier here was titled Honolulu Beauties—a lovely geisha themed piece that’s based on the historic Japanese woodblock prints with a tropical, Hawaiian flower twist—went to a lovely home in San Ramon—wonderful couple! It will be greatly loved in their home. This was a lovely piece.
Thank you to all who came out to the show and to all who had such nice things to say about my hand-crafted, reverse painted chandeliers—it was great to meet you and hope to see you again soon!