Celeste Mauro is an artist and designer living in Northport, NY. Celeste considers herself an abstract impressionist as her paintings are filled with a wonderful sense of light and atmosphere. Her recent work utilize a multi-layered combination of traditional & transparent techniques glazed over an array of exotic papers.
Celeste earned a graduate degree in Studio Art from Adelphi University Garden City, NY and undergraduate degrees in art and design from Adelphi University and Parsons School of Design, NYC. She has studied with noted aqua-media artists: Tony vanHasselt, Zoltan Szabo, Frank Webb, Mel Stabin, Judi Betts, Alvaro Castagnet and Bob Burridge. Celeste has been an active member of the Art League of Long Island and The Firefly Artists.
What is the source of your inspiration to create art?
The patterns and motifs found in nature inspire me to create an image that evokes an intuitive or emotional response. I attempt to capture a strong sense of place and light in hopes of creating an atmosphere that goes beyond the realistic landscape and into another realm.
How did you get involved in collage?
I was an avid watercolorist for years, where texture can only be implied in paintings due to the nature of the media. I decided to explore new territory and introduced collage into my work and was able to create real textures in my work. The mediums I use to adhere paper to the canvas or board block the absorption of watercolor to the surface. I had to switch to acrylic paints since they offer the versatility I need.
Do you miss watercolor?
I still use many watercolor techniques. The versatility of acrylics allows me to work very thin (transparency) or heavy (more opaque). The use of very thin papers also allow transparency when layered on to the surface. My recent paintings are much larger than before - another benefit of working with acrylics!
Can you explain your current technique?
I sometimes call it ‘art lasagna’! I alternate techniques & media: a layer of paint, then collage, then maybe some free-form printing techniques, maybe a glaze or wash over that.The random shapes or crumpled paper add texture & excitement, printing adds an element of surprise and brush strokes add color & detail. The process is fun and exhilarating, the outcome can be unpredictable but always interesting & unique!
What is Gallery Sixty Seven?
In 2017, myself and another Northport artist launched a new art gallery in Northport: Gallery Sixty Seven. It was a gallery as well as a working studio space - which made it unique. The gallery represented a handful of local artists whose work was inspired by the beauty of the Long Island landscape.