Florida School of the Arts presents paintings by Laura Colomb

Cross to Bear painting

Cross to Bear

Memory painting


The Conjuring painting

The Conjuring

Florida School of the Arts presents paintings by Jacksonville Beach artist Laura Colomb. The exhibit opens with a reception on Thursday, January 25 at 5:00 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

According to Colomb’s artist statement, her recent work focuses on locations such as Kingsley Plantation, Fort Caroline National Monument and the Talbot Islands State Parks. “The heat of Florida, the swamps, the humidity, and the bugs only add to the sense of foreboding as I try to imagine what the stolen and displaced people who built these sites felt, as they found themselves in this poisoned Garden of Eden,” Colomb said. “The density of these forests, with the ominous rustle of creatures moving close next to you, but which you can't see, create a miasma of nightmare. Yet, in the light, the greenery, and the scrub, there is a rich beauty, as if steeped in a world where time stands still, where one can still momentarily get lost in the romanticism of the natural landscape.”

Colomb believes that most major natural spaces, where one can really experience raw nature, are through state and national parks; many of which were initially protected due to their proximity to sites which contained historical significance. “For my artistic practice, I make paintings and drawings in these spaces, both from life and from sketches and photographs that I take,” Colomb said. “In exploring this land, I am always struck by the contradiction of these utterly incredible, beautiful, awe-inspiring spaces adjoining historic sites where extremely violent events and massive crimes of injustice often took place.”

Colomb holds a masters degree in fine art from Boston University. Her work has been exhibited internationally, and she holds various awards including an Art Ventures grant from the Community Foundation of Northeast Florida. She has taught at the University of North Florida, Boston University, the College of Saint Rose and SUNY Adirondack. She has been a guest critic/speaker for the Camberwell College of Art in London, UK.

More information is available at

The exhibit can be viewed 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, and during FloArts main stage performances through February 26.

Florida School of the Arts is located on the St. Johns River State College Palatka Campus and serves the entire state of Florida. FloArts is part of the academic and administrative structure of SJR State and awards associate degrees in acting, dance performance, musical theater, stage management, theater technology, graphic design/new media and studio art. For more information, call (386) 312-4300 or visit FloArts.