230 E. Victoria St. Santa Barbara, CA 93101 (805) 966-7759

Featured Artists

Kristen Spalding 



Kristen Spalding: Regarding an impression’s distillation.


Welcome, if you’ve made it this far then you’re ready!   Hello to you who reads this, an “artist’s statement” for anyone interested.  O, that I shall make it more than a momentary stream of words!


It is a true honor and blessing that I have been allowed to hang these paintings of trees and organic forms here in this beautiful and intentional space.   For this I must express great gratitiude to the people of Spiritland Bistro—the extended family who devote their whole selves to making this place happen, selflessly, and to Jordan and Aeon for deciding to bring artists’ works to the walls.   I also recognize deep thanks to the great divinity on Earth, provider of life and beauty, that I may celebrate life’s forms in this way.    I pay my homage thorough these paintings, grateful to be moved by matter.


These paintings are more than odes to trees.  They are devotional works.  They mark my gratitude for the intelligent force that gives abundant and magnificent life.  They mark my own humility and wonder as I contemplate something which is so old and wise it quiets my soul.  Here, also, I see evidence of my mortal attempt to hold onto something transitory yet constantly renewed, both ageless and passing.  Maybe these playful attempts to “keep” beauty reflect my soul’s simultaneous knowing that eternity is granted and creation inevitable; but like a child first speaks, the words are mispronounced and the meaning is somewhere obscured in the pointed direction.  My mind seeks to catch up and clarify these things I’ve forgotten amidst all the distraction, as my higher self keeps dangling eternity like a shiny object before my delicate eyes.


Goodness, how these thoughts meander.  This is also a cathartic process I’m glad to be a part of and so glad to share.   Thank you for being a part of it with me.  I hope that in reading this or seeing these works that the power of gratitude translates, and you experience love in recognition of life’s gifts to you.  Recognize your blessings and appreciate what is constantly given to you.  You will feel true love.

All works are oil on canvas, some have embroidery as well.  The fig tree and roses were painted from observation.  I then moved into memory and imagination.


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