Posts tagged Flora

A few years ago I came across some paintings on instagram of landscapes by artist Matt Murphy, that I loved. The California in Matt’s paintings was immediately familiar to me, and the color palettes and the energy drew me in right away.

Im always drawn to artists who have a point of view and are fearless when it comes to expressing their work with color, because it’s the language I speak in my own work.

Matt Murphy makes deeply saturated and layered paintings that in my opinion express his love of California, and more specifically the desert. His paintings remind me of the insides of stone fruit you’d find in the summer, pluots, peaches, apricots but mixed with bright blue play dough and fluorescent high lighters. His first show was really focused on the far away vistas, mountains, hills, sun sets.

Recently he had a show in Venice called Freak of Nature, that he speaks about below.

Artist Matt Murphy, copyright Diana Koenigsberg

I had a studio visit with Matt this fall that we had talked about doing for the past couple of years, and finally got around to doing post vaccinations. To see more of Matt’s work check out his instagram and website.

Portrait of Artist Matt Murphy in his studio, copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2021

For my recent show, Freak of Nature, I continued my fascination and exploration of the California high desert.

From the rich hues and fluid shapes, to the endless variety of alien cacti – the desert is such a profound backdrop to explore. 
Even though I’ve been making art my whole life, and studied graphic design at RISD, the practice of painting is still very new to me. For the past three years, I’ve pushed myself to explore the world around me in full color – versus just black and white drawings.

The more I played with color, the more I realized how much of a missing ingredient it was for me, and how it fueled my path forward. 

Studio of Artist Matt Murphy, copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2021
Painting surface in Matt’s Studio, copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2021

For me, art is all about methodology and routine – you have to make art part of a daily practice. So that’s exactly what I did. Over time, and many many experiments, I started to create my own process for how the desert would come to life. Rather than using one single paint brush – I began connecting them together – creating what I now call, super brushes. With some as large as 60″, these super brushes became the first step to each painting that I make.

Matt’s Super brushes in his studio

Artistically, I’m influenced by so many both past and present. From Van Gogh’s sketchbooks in Arles to Calder’s ‘Circus’, I’m constantly feeding off of how people SEE the world – and then re-present back with new understanding, or texture, or whimsy. 
In terms of straight up artists who I deeply love and admire – Ed Ruscha and Ken Price are very high on my list.

I’m inspired by how their body of work expands over time – across all kinds of mediums and subject matters. 

Studio of Artist Matt Murphy, copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2021
Portrait of Artist Matt Murphy in his studio, copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2021

At this moment in my practice, making art is both about finding my voice and honing the presentation of my craft – all the while making sure there’s a ‘give back’ quality. I’m constantly auctioning off my paintings or using my work to raise money for needed causes in the world. As I look to nature as a source of beauty – doing all I can to help protect and give back to it is key.



1. Fanny – Christmas eve, 2. Cactus blossoms, 3. Kate Spade window, 4. Sunrise over Pasadena, 5. Girls in Paper dresses

Im excited to share with you the work of one of my favorite people. My aunt, Bonnie Saland, who after practicing for many years as a Jungian Analyst and raising 2 incredible adults, has turned her hands and eyes toward making art.

Bonnie’s created an impressive body of work consisting of painting, drawing, print making, and collage, that on it’s own is rich in color, texture, not to mention thought provoking. From this work, has come a really interesting line of house ware, textiles, and patterns, all derived from the shapes and images culled from her artwork, and then repeated in beautiful ways by friend and collaborator Margi Denton.

I shot Bonnie’s line of products last week at her home.

Her company is called PHILOMELA,  please take a peak at a this little sample of Bonnie’s rich and inspiring collection, soon to be in stores and out in the world.

Wishing you a fantastic week!!


Philomela 2014Philomela 2014 Philomela 2014Philomela 2014 Philomela 2014


Bonnie Saland Fine art and Founder

Bonnie Saland is a practicing psychoanalyst and artist based in Los Angeles and The Sea Ranch, California. The interior and external journey provide subject and frame for her creative practice. Traversing an extensive archive of imagery from the personal and collective unconscious, she meanders through geographic, literary and spiritual references to provide an iconographic language with layers of meaning. A freely associated yet complexly organized body of work incorporates traditional patterning, abstraction, and the poetic use of color in an ongoing non-linear reconfiguration of journal, print, digitalized and textile format. Saland holds an M.F.A. (September 2012) from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design program at the Provincetown Work Center and is represented in Los Angeles by MB Abram Galleries.

A few weeks back, I made a trip with my family to Phoenix to visit my sister and her family. Her son Yosef had just turned 7. He desperately wanted a baby chick.

Phoenix Botanical Garden , copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2014

IMG_3234 IMG_3240IMG_3155Phoenix at Sunset , copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2014kIds feed store with chicks , copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2014kIds at birthday party phoenix , copyright Diana Koenigsberg 201 IMG_3143IMG_3228Vivienne at the Phoenix Botanical Garden , copyright Diana Koeni






Jeanne Kelley is a food stylist, cook book author, urban farmer, mother, and a recipe developer. She has an effortless way of integrating the garden with beautiful, healthy and delicious food. Jeanne lives and works in Los Angeles, with her husband Martin, and embodies the essence of the color green throughout her life and work, growing food, and living amongst  the trees.


Green Color Study - Hellebores, copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2014

Jeanne Kelly -Color Study - Green , copyright Diana Koenigsberg

Jeanne Kelly -Color Study - Green , copyright Diana Koenigsberg

Jeanne Kelly -Color Study - Green , copyright Diana Koenigsberg

Color Study - Green Eggs, copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2014
Jeanne Kelly -Color Study - Green , copyright Diana Koenigsberg Watermelon Radish and salt_Color Study - Green , copyright Diana

Garden bounty_Color Study - Green , copyright Diana Koenigsberg Jeanne Kelly -Color Study - Green , copyright Diana Koenigsberg

Jeanne Kelly -Color Study - Green , copyright Diana Koenigsberg

Bromeliad, New York City, copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2013 Many Eloises, copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2013

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Cherry tree copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2012

Jenny's trash, copyright Diana Koenigsberg 2013


1) Rae’s apartment, Nolita, 2) Eloise Dolls, Plaza Hotel, New York, 3) Vivienne at the California Adventure, 4) Pink macaroon from Euro Pane, 5) Franki at home, 6 ) Jenny’s trash



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1) Purple Cactus – Huntington Gardens, 2) Sunset – Los Feliz, 3)  Merry Go Round – Disneyland, 4) Drying napkins – Waldorf Kindergarten, 6 ) Layne – Sweet Clems Popsicles, 7 ) ” Large Wall” – DeWain ValentineNorton Simon, 8 ) Sink – Langer’s Ladies room

Paddle Cactus - DIANA KOENIGSBERG Copyright 2012

sunset on house- DIANA KOENIGSBERG Copyright 2012

Chandeliers at the Plaza- DIANA KOENIGSBERG Copyright 2012 DK_chinatown.treeCoral Sky - DIANA KOENIGSBERG Copyright 2012

Norton Simon statue - DIANA KOENIGSBERG Copyright 2012

Kitty McNamee - DIANA KOENIGSBERG Copyright 2013 Sunrise - DIANA KOENIGSBERG Copyright 2013 sunset - DIANA KOENIGSBERG Copyright 20121 ) Paddle cactus – Arlington Garden, Pasadena, 2) Sunset on house, 3) Chandeliers at The Plaza, NY, 4) Sky at dusk, 5) Bronze statue at Norton Simon Museum, San Marino, 6) Kitty McNamee, 7) Sunrise at home, 8 ) Sunset over Los Angeles