Visiting artists finding inspiration at the Lotus Garden

Recently, on the same day, not one but TWO artists found inspiration on our rooftop creating beautiful interpretations of our beloved garden.

Standing beside his easel looking a little like a modern-day Monet, Angel Paniagua is a local artist who finds joy in painting in the outdoors. Originally a professional engraver (with his own business near the World Trade Center,) he retired after 9/11 and began painting professionally. He enjoys the technique Plein Art – a practice made into an art form by the French Impressionists – experiencing painting outdoors and following the changing qualities of light.  It’s difficult, he says, “and creates a challenge, so you have to paint fast !” (He did this painting in less than 4 hrs!) He also enjoys teaching seniors to paint where he lives on Long Island and exhibits there locally.

The other talented artist was Ishita Jain (@IshitaJain24,) a first-timer to the Lotus Garden!  As she told me, “I’m never without my sketchbook and really enjoy finding green spaces in the city to illustrate.” A versatile artist working in all mediums, she prefers working on location illustrating landscapes and architecture.  Presently a grad student getting her MFA in Illustration at SVA, her dream is to “travel the world, meeting new people and illustrating their stories.” Well, lucky them ! Check out her website, Her work is beautiful, with a very unique voice.


Many thanks to Angel and Ishita for capturing the beauty of our garden and brightening our day. We hope to see you both at the garden again soon !