Flora Ramirez-Bustamante: From Spain to Seattle
Flora Ramirez-Bustamante (Volume 2, Number 2) is a Seattle area-based artist. She is originally from Madrid, Spain. She studied Linguistics and has a PhD in Spanish Linguistics from Universidad Autónoma of Madrid. After a career in linguistics and computational linguistics, she started devoting more time to her art practice, and became a full time artist.
Ramirez-Bustamante has a vivid curiosity for abstraction and art making. Most of her works are about fragments and the aesthetics that rises with fragmentation, the importance being in the shapes and forms, the edges and more invisible areas, the collection of the pieces and the creation of layers of deposits. Like memory that stores layers and layers of data, her artworks are the only visible fragments of all the other pieces of memories that get lost, unclear, and not visible.
This issue’s cover art, Edith (2010) depicts Edith Trettin, Ramirez-Bustamante’s husband’s mother. Edith Trettin was a lapidary artist with a strong respect for nature and traditional crafting processes. She was also a visionary leader who in 1968 established the Trettin Drop-In Preschool in Seattle. Ramirez-Bustamante says of her, “I met Edith in the last years of her life, but we recognized each other as members of the same club. She shared with me her love for rocks and the body of work she created during the years. I always admired her humbleness, her quiet way of being a great artist without a suffocating ego. Something that I treasure: every dinner with her ended with a beautiful rock in my pocket.”
Edith is based on a photograph of her taken at home. The light was so bright that everything around her appears unclear, undefined. Edith is one of the faceless portraits Ramirez-Bustamante painted around 2010 when faces and details haunted her, and she wanted to paint portraits with what she saw as the minimum necessary to depict her models.
Additional samples of her drawing and sculpture can be viewed on her web site, floraramirez.com.