La Joie de Vivre, Fifi Flowers-style
Just about everybody who has been to Paris has fallen in love with it. And the rest are likely just as smitten with the notion that lives within their imagination thanks to photographs and paintings that illustrate the best of what one of the most romantic and beautiful cities in the world has to offer.
The paintings from Fifi Flowers convey the playfulness, guilt-free indulgence and unapologetic passion that lives in the heart of Paris, its interiors and its people. How is it that simple lines and a vibrant colour palette can imbue the kinds of qualities that leave us hopelessly besotted? The answer lies in the heart, the hand and the eye of the artist who, who when I first saw her paintings, had me feeling the emotional equivalent of a wet puppy just out of the bath madly tearing around the house.
Fifi paints homages to other great cities as well and takes commissions where she works from your travel photographs or pictures of your house or business or even your pets, and makes them Fifi-esque. And she appears to be endlessly enamoured by flowers and beautiful interiors which are my favourite paintings of hers as I share the same longing to be surrounded by gorgeous and happy things.
And then she takes it even further. The saying goes "the home is where the heart is," and the ultimate home surely reflects those details we consider the key to a blissful existence. So it's only fitting that Fifi also provides an online decorating service which is as simple as sending her photos of the room you want to decorate. She then works within your budget to create colour renderings and floor plans of your new look, and provides photos of the items she envisions for your room and where to buy them.
Pink Mirror. Fifi Flowers
I wanted to know more about the Los Angeles-based artist and decorator so I delved a bit further into who is Fifi:
One can't help but notice that Paris figures prominently in your paintings; is it your favourite city/subject?
Paris...French things are a favourite of mine, for sure!! I studied French art and the Parisian art lifestyle while I was in art school. Once I graduated I went to Paris for a week, walked the streets and felt overwhelmed knowing I was where some of my favourite artists hung out. EXCITING!! I have yet to return, but the memories are still in my heart. I hope to return next year!
What inspired me to paint in the first place was the LOVE of art. My favourite artist is Henri Matisse. I wanted a painting in my home by him. Of course I cannot afford an original so I painted reproductions of his work. I have six or seven Matisse reproductions by moi hanging in my home. I enjoyed painting so much that I started painting my own paintings of things that surround my daily life. I LOVE colour and FUN, so that is what reflects in my paintings.
You also decorate home interiors. Do you seek to re-create the kind of aesthetic that you like to capture in your paintings or will you work in any style?
I do decorate homes and offices and I try to consider each individual in the home and the clients that will be in the office. I will not be living in the houses so they really MUST reflect the inhabitants of the dwelling. Everyone is so different with unique needs and wants. However, I do like to incorporate a painting in each project I work on and they are also to their taste. These days I do very little interior decorating because I am so busy working on my paintings or painting commissions, but I do some online decorating.
Berry Cushions and Wine. Fifi Flowers.
Fifi's Happy Studio. Fifi Flowers
Cafe de France. Fifi Flowers
After spending a total of 10 weeks in Paris thus far I have to say that what is so wonderful about the city is that once experiencing it in person, it lives up to the expectations conjured during daydreams and then some (though sufferers of Paris syndrome - a bizarre reaction to disappointment once arriving in Paris that affects some Japanese tourists who require medical attention and counselling - would surely disagree!). So, to be able to put up a painting that captures the spirit of the city, whether it be a street scene or a turquoise chaise longe and look at it daily is a real treat. For my new house I'm now trying to decide which pieces of Fifi's collection will make me happiest; though that's a tough one - I find myself smiling ear to ear every time I browse her gallery. Vrai bonheur.
Pink Commode. Fifi Flowers