Since I moved from France to the United States 13 years ago, I have been researching and painting the history of San Francisco and the Bay Area. I find fascinating to observe how it can go from one extreme to the other in less than 250 years. Starting with a small Spanish settlement to the Gold Rush, from the 1906 earthquake, to the Panama-Pacific International Exposition of 1915 or even from the "Summer of Love" to the high tech of the growing Silicon Valley.
Born in 1974 and raised in Paris, France, I studied Art History at the University of Paris X Nanterre and Fine Art in different art studios. I received a MFA from the University of Paris X in 2000 and started a PhD about "Figurative Print in the Bay Area". I never finished it, but in the first years of my PhD, I taught Art History and Fine Art at the University and in private schools of design. My work is inspired by the work of Henri Matisse, Gustav Klimt and Frida Kahlo.
I work mostly in figurative painting but also love to develop my subject matter through many techniques like digital painting, printmaking, encaustic, stained glass and mural. I have traveled and exhibited in France, Switzerland, San Francisco and the Bay Area.
My work is on display at The San Mateo County History Museum in Redwood City, and at the San Carlos Chamber of Commerce in San Carlos. I teach art classes in French at Artefleur's Studio located at the Art Center of Redwood City and San Carlos, year-round.
The Luxor Obelisk in Paris.
In May 1998, while I was learning engraving at a Paris School of Fine Art, I was asked by the Foundry Pierre de Coubertin in Saint Remy les Chevreuse, France, to engrave a commemorative plaque in copper for the pyramidion of The Luxor Obelisk, Place de la Concorde, in Paris. It was a Custom order for E. Poncelet Inspecteur General des monuments Historiques. The Obelisk was missing its original gold-leafed pyramid cap (believed stolen in the 6th century BC) and the French government had decided to have it replaced. The plaque I engraved was placed underneath the new cap on top of the Obelisk. (for nobody to see). The new gold leaf pyramid cap was unveiled during the visit of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak as part of the celebrations of the Franco-Egyptian relations. The Luxor Obelisk is, since then, back to its original splendor.
Recycling Bridal Gown Samples.
In 2008, I was working free lance for a Bridal Store in San Mateo. We were trying to find a way to recycle bridal gown samples. I was painting, sewing, dyeing the gowns. Today's bride magazine contacted the store looking for a new idea for their summer edition. One of my dress made the cover. Today’s Bride, Summer 2008, Cover page & page 8. Model «Tea with a Butterfly» Silk Painting for Nouvelle Vogue, San Mateo, CA, USA. National Bride Publication, 2008.
Q&A with Teresa Beyer for The Art Center of Redwood City and San Carlos
What projects are you working on right now, and why are you enthusiastic about them?
My two main projects right now are a new series of paintings and my art classes in french.
I started a new series recently, called “Alice in San Francisco”. I am using the character of Alice in Wonderland that everybody knows to address the issues specific to the Bay area where I live and Paris the city where I’m from. I like to compare these two cultures, look at what make them so particular, the food, the housing, the traffic, the way of life. In these paintings I try to represent the schizophrenic state of our lives in these cities in perpetual changes.
What is your favorite part of the artistic process?
My favorite parts of the artistic process is when I talk to people and they tell me about their own stories, about their lives in San Francisco or in the Bay Area. I’m an art historian, each of my paintings start with a research on a specific subject; the 1906 earthquake, the gold rush, the silicon valley, etc… People around here made San Francisco, they make up its history, even survived local earthquakes. These individuals tell me stories, and show me photos or books. They are a great inspiration for my work.
Tell me about the classes that you teach and the interaction with your Students.
I have always been interested by the art world. I studied and taught Art and Art history in France. When I moved to the Bay Area thirteen years ago, I started teaching french in private schools. It’s only recently that I decided to combine french, art and art history. I started to teach art classes in French to adults and kids. After teaching at different locations, I opened my own business “Artefleur’s studio” at the Art center of Redwood City and San Carlos. It’s a thrilling new adventure, my students bring so much of themselves, their energy to learn, their questioning, their creativity. I’m really enjoying it. My classes are very flexible, I always ask my students what they would like to learn and then I add to it. Art is a really good way to learn another language and to keep it fun.