Bella Rotta™ is the official name that Rolinda, an amazing artist and human showing work at Thomas Anthony Gallery in Park City, chose to describe her method of art making.
Translated from Italian, it means “beautifully imperfect”. And as I reflect on her brilliant methodology, I know if I keep waiting for those perfect words I seek to describe the captivating, far-ranging scope of this artist’s work, I will miss the opportunity to share her contagious passion for art and life. So here follows my humble, broken attempt.
“The cracks in her paintings are real. (Pause for effect.) It’s not a crackle finish you see on Rolinda’s deeply textured surfaces. She actually breaks her paintings and brings them back to life again: “In my paintings, I want there to be an element of imperfection. Imperfect things give way to grace and a sense of freedom. Only through this freedom can we attain a sense of calm.”
One continuous theme runs throughout Rolinda’s life endeavors—she believes in the raw power of storytelling. She makes her own and others’ stories come alive through an art that takes many forms. Orchid Stories was one such project birthed through her experience of shared stories.
When her friend Stephanie was diagnosed with stage IV breast cancer, Rolinda brought her an orchid as a sign of hope and love along the journey. “I went to a friend’s orchid nursery and found a very delicate, small orchid that had multiple spikes of buds patiently waiting to bloom. I wanted this orchid to be there for Stephanie as she went through the rounds of chemo, blooming slowly over a long period of time to give hope with each new bloom,” explains Rolinda. She was soon inspired to paint the beautiful flowers and subsequently create a whole series of work she calls
As she reached out through friends and social media, she soon discovered a great number of people with stories about their own connections to the beauty and meaning of the orchid flower. She has now produced two books featuring her beautiful orchid portraits alongside others’ orchid stories, a website and a series of video interviews describing this remarkable quest.
“You have a story to tell. And it needs to be heard,” relates Rolinda. “Your scars and brokenness are just the story that you’ve lived. Just like my art has real cracks, so does the canvas of your life.”