Featured Artist Jacqueline Chanda

Artist Jacqueline Chanda presents a collection of figurative paintings that explore everyday life in urban settings. View more of her compelling portfolio by visiting her website.


painting of people at a cafe called Aix-presso in Aix en Provence by Jacqueline Chanda

“Aix-presso” oil on panel, 7” x 7”


My passion for art started when I was a young child in Detroit, Michigan, where I was born. At the tender age of seven I did a drawing of my mother that actually looked like her. My parents’ reaction to the drawing indicated to me that I had something special. From that point forward, I asked for art supplies as gifts for birthdays and Christmas.


painting of people in Cours Mirabeau in Provence by Jacqueline Chanda

“Cours Mirabeau” oil on panel, 9” x 12”


In those days, art was still very much a part of the public school curriculum. I remember learning about artists such as Picasso and Cezanne in elementary school. I even did a replica of the painting “Blue Boy” by Thomas Gainsborough.


painting of people shopping in the rain by Jacqueline Chanda

“Shopping in the Rain” oil on panel, 24” x 20”


As a young teen, my parents allowed me to turn our old garage into my art studio. In that space I did small paintings and drawings, and created handmade greeting cards that I later sold at the local stationery store.


painting of a woman walking with her morning coffee by Jacqueline Chanda

“Morning Coffee” oil on canvas, 40” x 30”


By this time, we had moved to California. In high school I took every art class I could and became the art teacher’s protégé. For three years in a row, I won scholarships to attend drawing lessons every Saturday at the California Art Center, today known as the Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles.


painting of a street scene in Aix by Jacqueline Chanda

“A Street in Aix” oil on canvas, 14” x 18”


After high school, a scholarship took me to UCLA where I studied painting and drawing and obtained my undergraduate degree. Graduate school led me to Paris, France, where I studied visual arts, art education and plastic arts and theory and aesthetics at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux Arts and the Sorbonne University. I also participated in open studio sessions at the Académie de Port-Royal. During this period, I exhibited at the Grand Palais and at the Galerie Louis Soulanges and sold work along the way.


figurative painting of pedestrians by Jacqueline Chanda

“Passing Time” oil on canvas, 20” x 16”


Upon graduation, my attention turned to building my academic career in art education. After a successful career, established through teaching and higher education administration, I turned my attention to my initial love—painting. I am now a full-time artist living in Tucson, Arizona.


painting of people walking in the street by Jacqueline Chanda

“Lady in an Orange Scarf” oil on panel, 12” x 9”


Because I am inspired by all that I see, the subject matter of my paintings varies and includes landscapes, portraits, animals, figures and genre paintings (scenes of ordinary life). I particularly like creating genre compositions that examine and scrutinize people in different settings, allowing me to record the nuances of everyday life.


painting of people crossing a city street by Jacqueline Chanda

“Green Means Go” oil on panel, 12” x 16”


I generally do not paint people posing or staring directly at the viewer. I like capturing them in the moment, in candid unscripted poses with unguarded expressions.


painting of people at Arasta Bazaar in Istanbul by Jacqueline Chanda

“Arasta Bazaar” oil on canvas, 40” x 30”


The intent is to create visual metaphors of narrative moments in ongoing stories of life. Hopefully, my paintings encourage the viewer to connect with life on a different level; seeing themselves and everyone as an integral part of the human experience.


painting of people window shopping by Jacqueline Chanda

“Window Shopping” oil on panel, 7” x 7”


My representational oil paintings are executed alla prima or indirect. My strokes are suggestive, painterly and loose and my compositions often make use of accidental cropping as in a snapshot. The intent is to create a natural, dynamic, authentic environment that draws in the viewer.


Artist Jacqueline Chanda invites you to follow her on Facebook and Instagram.


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  1. Thank you for giving me a beautiful tour of your work. The work is proficient and just painting one figure is a challenge for me but you manage to design figures and relationships very with elegance

  2. Thank you for your comment. It is a challenge painting multiple figures, but I enjoy creating believable scenes from life where people are engaged with each other or with themselves, because this is what we do or what we used to do and hopefully will do very soon.

    Would you like to receive my newsletter? I publish a monthly newsletter that talks about what is going on with my art. It show works in progress, new works, events, exhibitions, etc. in which I am involved. Are you an artist too?

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