Mermaid Altar Retablo by Contemporary Latina Artist, Cristina Acosta

La Sirena Azul The Blue Mermaid by ©Cristina Acosta
La Sirena Azul The Blue Mermaid by ©Cristina Acosta, Contemporary Hispanic art market

The mermaid retablo image is strong and iconic. Her tail swoops above her, creating a sort of crown. The shape of her tail and body combine to create a shape reminiscent of plant life. A horizon line of sterling silver leaf goes through her eyes, reminiscent of sea foam. The mosaic embracing her is studded with sea shells amid 24kt. gold glazed ceramic tile pieces.

I spent my early childhood living by the sea. I used to see pictures of mermaids and think that they were mostly all wrong looking renditions of sexy sea nymphs waiting for a sailor to fall overboard and float into their domain. This mermaid is different. She represents the ocean as a life giving, beautiful place but with the feeling that the dark and foreboding side of her world is also present. I love the sea, yet I’m always a bit afraid of the dark, unknown waters around me. She is my homage to the beautiful changeable sea.

Title: La Sirena / The Mermaid

Size:  18” x 24”

Year: 2007 September

Medium:  Oil; sterling silver leaf; antique 24kt. Gold glazed tile mosaic; semi-precious stones on vintage Ponderosa Pine wood panel reclaimed from a 1904 wood mill and formed by an artisan wood worker into a single panel.