‘Intimate Nature’ Art Exhibit at the Helen Crocker Russell Library

Intimate Nature: Plants and Landscapes of Central California Paintings by Jeanne Rosen Sofen

February – May 2024

Using a variety of painting techniques, Jeanne Rosen Sofen has created a loving tribute to the beauty and diversity of Central California, from Sierra Nevada mountains to oak woodlands, to coastal hills and redwoods. A lifetime of enjoying and observing the natural world combined with years of exploring painting techniques has brought us this exciting exhibit of paintings of plants and landscapes.

Sofen, who lives and works in the Santa Cruz area, has exhibited work widely over many years. In addition to traditional oils for studio work and pastels for plein aire studies, Sofen has developed an original technique of painting combining sponge-painted art papers with paint. Layers of the painted paper are pieced together on the surface with additional layers of paint bringing the composition together. The resulting textural interest is expressive and unique. In addition to the luminous landscapes and mysterious woodland scenes, the show includes paintings of some California native wildflowers found on her travels.

High Sierra Horizon Pool

“I am fascinated with our natural world, noticing the details of a leaf edge or the golden reflections on a river.”

Art by Jeanne Rosen Sofen

High Sierra Horizon Pool
Sierra Stonescape
Spring Day at the Ranch
Yuba Pass Forest
Mariposa Lilies

Artists’ Statement

When I am out in nature, I study the profusion of colors and textures and myriad qualities of light that can transform an ordinary scene into something luminous. When I’m drawn to a particular place to paint, I focus on these qualities – color, texture, light and atmosphere to express that moment in that place. I am fascinated with our natural world, noticing the details of a leaf edge or the golden reflections on a river.  Ultimately, whatever the medium, I work to create pieces that speak of the splendid beauty of nature and the deep interconnection we sense when we are out in such places.

No admission is required to visit the new art exhibit in the Library. The Library is located inside the Main Gate of San Francisco Botanical Garden on the left-hand side.

Marissa Fong

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