Artists of Note | Madina Croce

Painting from life

Madina Croce, October Pond, oil, 20 x 16.

Madina Croce, October Pond, oil, 20 x 16.

This story was featured in the February 2015 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art February 2015 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story!

As a child, Madina Croce would sit with her maternal grandmother and watch her paint florals for hours. Her grandmother, a self-taught artist, noticed and encouraged the artistic talent in her granddaughter. Croce was a natural, winning art contests in grade school, but she set art aside after her father passed. Eventually she followed in the footsteps of her mother, a classical pianist and soprano, and went to college to study music and dance.

After a few years of various jobs post-college, Croce felt a longing to be the artist she knew she really was. She signed up for a drawing class and then a watercolor class before meeting New Mexico painter William Vincent, who encouraged her to pursue oils. That encouragement set the course for Croce, who today paints from life, using layers of paint, impasto brushwork, and lots of movement to convey energy in her works. “I prefer the experience of interacting with my subject in an energetic manner,” Croce says. “I give myself free rein to pursue the sense of light and the things I find beautiful.”

Her work is bold, colorful, and vibrant with an impressionistic flair. She began painting en plein air six years ago and focuses on water, flowers, and the changing seasons but doesn’t limit herself to these subjects. “I love not putting myself into a box,” she says. “For me it’s about being able to express in all these different ways and to go from one thing to the next because it fulfills these different parts of me.” —Joe Kovack

Croce’s work can be viewed at

Featured in the February 2015 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
Southwest Art February 2015 print issue or digital download Or subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss a story!

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