La Jolla Painter, Edna Pines

April Goodjohn

Spreading love and sharing joy are two longstanding philosophies La Jolla painter Edna Pines communicates through her work. Characterized by a bold style that includes strong brush strokes and energetic color, her work has a clean, bright style. Decades of painting have allowed her to hone a personal approach she uses in the creation of her pieces. Categorized in six groupings including Birds, WomenNatureFloating Garden, Abstract and Religion she incorporates lessons from her life experiences and messages of goodwill. 


Born in Tehran, Pines’ life-long, visual observations have served her well. Although Pines’ parents did not support her artistic talents,  from a very young age, she expressed her inner feelings through crafts with found materials like pieces of cardboard. During the Iranian revolution in 1979 Pine’s uncle, a Zionist, was killed and she and her parents immigrated to the United States.


Cultural diversity and freedom, especially for women, are what Pines found the most surprising and interesting elements of American life. Her work is informed by these early experiences. Evident in her series titled Women is the profound impact of women’s rights and freedom in this country. These stylized pieces celebrate positive feminine characteristics such as hope and confidence. 


After graduating high school in San Diego, Pines attended Grossmont college and later met her husband in a club in Tiajuna where he asked her to dance. Her excellent dancing skills may have been what led to a second date. Pines, normally extremely humble about her talent, confidently shares (along with a giggle) that she dances like Shakira.


Today, Pines relies on her husband as both her biggest supporter and biggest critic. She says she is so appreciative of her husband’s kind, critical eye because his opinions and comments help her grow. Her two adult daughters may be her biggest fans. They proudly display their mother’s work in their Manhattan apartments and have indicated when they move to larger, more permanent homes, they expect her to bathe all their walls with her art. 


Working from her home studio, Pines leaves large doors open that allow her to commune with nature while she works. Preferring the sounds of local songbirds to listening to music, Pines draws inspiration for paintings of nature. The bird is a common theme in her work as birds represent closeness to Heaven, spirituality, love and freedom. Taking in nature while on long walks with her husband also provides motivation and insight for both representational and abstract work. Pines says “We must look for beauty in everything” and find beauty, she does. 


Chronicled in all Pines’ work is a sense of whimsy. Her mixed-media approach allows her to communicate joy and love for life in her heart. She uses a combination of brushes and palette knives to apply oil and acrylic paint on canvass and wooden panels. She says the use of a variety of techniques best allows her to express emotion and meaning in her work. One technique would feel limiting to her. Many of her pieces dedicated to birds boast carefully placed, heavy pallet knife strokes, other areas of her work are defined by loose, delicate brushstrokes and the application of collage materials.


Pines’ current body of work, titled The Many Shades of Us chronicles her passion for sharing feelings of love, light, positive energy and understanding and will be exhibited at BFREE STUDIO from March 31 through April 17, 2022. 


Barbara Freeman opened July 2021. Freeman seeks to bring mid-career artists to the La Jolla art community. In addition to interesting exhibitions, the gallery offers a host of activities including mindfulness classes, art lessons, artist talks and lectures.

March 27, 2022