For over a decade Patricia Araujo has painted San Francisco's central city architecture. While she lived in the area, she was enchanted by its rich architectural history and the decayed beauty of many buildings that remain, and she continues to paint both iconic city landmarks and abandoned downtown buildings, as an elegy to San Francisco's architectural past.
Since 2008 she has also devoted herself to a new body of work, Tomorrowland Today, featured in this monograph. The newer series was inspired by futuristic, classical, and industrial architecture. The structures she has brought together in these paintings include circus arenas, citadels, and roller coasters. These imaginary cityscapes are a mixture of old and new constructions from various places, East and West. Araujo has sought to bring centuries of utopianism and hope for the future together in a fantasized present, as that present might be created in an architect's or a painter's vision.
"This series of paintings by Patricia Araujo is not a realistic depiction of any one Tomorrowland at any single point in time. It is, collectively, an artist’s fantasy, like a theme and variations in music, about the imaginative act involved in designing a representation of the future, seeing it built, seeing it get older. It unobtrusively reminds us that looking forward and looking back are closely connected.” (From the foreword by Jerome Tarshis, Art Critic).
Jerome Tarshis has written about art for Art in America, House and Garden, Vogue, Travel and Leisure, The Christian Science Motion, and many other publications. He lives in San Francisco.