About Sanda

I paint therefore I am

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Join Sanda as she delves into her artistic process, inspirations, and the themes that permeate her work.

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Early Life and Education

Sanda, a Romanian-born Israeli-American artist, grew up as a Jewish child in Romania during World War II, speaking German as her mother tongue. Her extended family in Poland, suffered immense losses during the Holocaust, with many members perishing in Poland and Buchenwald. While in Romania, Sanda was inspired to pursue art from an early age. She was a prodigy child who taught herself to read at the age of five and excelled in mathematics nationally, although her true passion lay in art. Her talent was recognized during a summer school program by the Institute of Fine Art Teachers and at just sixteen, she was admitted to the prestigious Nicolae Grigorescu Institute of Fine Arts in Bucharest, becoming the youngest student to receive a special admission. There, she studied under distinguished painters such as Alexandru Ciucurencu, Corina Lecca, Rudolf Schweitzer-Cumpăna, and Octav Angheluță, with whom she completed her Thesis Exam. Alexandru Ciucurencu, in particular, profoundly influenced her, helping her to develop and refine her distinctive style.

Emigration and Artistic Development

Sanda and her family faced significant challenges in escaping Romania and immigrating to Israel in 1962, starting anew with nothing. Like many artists of the time, her initial dream was to go to Paris. She studied at the École Nationale des Beaux-Arts in Paris for two years before returning to Israel and eventually settling in the artist village of Ein Hod. There, she found a supportive community among notable figures like Marcel Janco. In her Ein Hod studio, Sanda dedicated herself to her art, exhibiting extensively at the prestigious Old Jaffa Gallery in Tel Aviv. In Jerusalem, she earned a scholarship from the American Israel Cultural Foundation, allowing her to study under Ernst Fuchs, co-founder of the Vienna School of Fantastic Realism. Under his tutelage, Sanda mastered the luminous techniques of the Old Masters, creating works with radiant colors and textures through a meticulous blend of egg tempera, paint, and resin. Guided by the principles of classical painting, she explored themes of allegory, symbolism, and Surrealism while maintaining her distinct artistic voice. Her paintings and drawings from this period, imbued with the essence of Jewish life, figures, and mysticism, showcased her meticulous and nuanced style, solidifying her status as a masterful artist. Her shows frequently sold out, with collectors eagerly waiting in line for her work.

The New York Era: Creativity and Inspiration

In 1974, Sanda embarked on a new chapter of her artistic journey with a move to New York City. Settling in at 41 Union Square, a vibrant hub bustling with creativity, she found herself among esteemed peers like Isabel Bishop, Dorothy Dehner, and Riko Makeska, each leaving their mark on the city's art scene. This transition infused Sanda's work with dynamic new themes, inspired by the city's pulsating street life and energetic dance scenes. Amidst the lively atmosphere of Union Square, her paintings blossomed with vitality, enriching her already diverse artistic legacy. Sanda's body of work reflects a profound celebration of nature, intricately detailed flower close-ups, and whimsical "Chair Persons" series, which merge storytelling with everyday objects, embodying a captivating blend of narrative, fantasy, and expressionism. Her art invites viewers into a world woven from evocative imagery and metaphors, where each piece unfolds with a festive yet solemn resonance.