Eye on the Arts
Awash with Color: Celeste Mauro

Village Connection Magazine, Huntington
February 2014, Elise Pearlman

Watercolor is a mercurial, unpredictable medium, but in the hands of a seasoned professional like Celeste Mauro, the results can be dazzling.

“The mystique of watercolor holds endless fascination for me” said the longtime Northport resident and former teacher of art and design. She is simply tantalized by the creative possibilities of  “luscious washes and veils of color” achieved through glazing on white paper’s glorious blank slate.

Having worked in watercolor for 30 years, she recently began to explore watercolor collage.

“Although I still paint traditional watercolor, I have been seduced by the mystique of applying paper to paper,” Celeste said, waxing poetic about the “fabulous array of papers” which imbue her work with incredible texture, color, transparency, translucency and decorative effect such as fibers.  

Her modus operandi entails alternating watercolor over collage and collage over watercolor until the piece is complete.

“The free form shapes of torn or cut paper add a sense of abstraction: the brushwork adds detail. I often disguise the transparent nature of the collage papers with the inherent transparency of watercolor,” Celeste explained.

Viewers will find that Celeste frequently gravitates towards a pastel palette. Her penchant for delicate hues is showcased in “Under See”, an enchanting watercolor recently displayed as part of Northport Historical Society’s juried exhibit: “An Artist’s Vision of Northport.”

“As an inveterate beach walker who lives in Northport, I am of course, on friendly terms with the horseshoe crab,” Celeste said of these prehistoric creatures found only our Eastern seaboard. Despite their name, horseshoe crabs are actually arthropods and therefore more closely related to spiders and scorpions.

“This imaginative watercolor is my artist’s vision as to how beautiful horseshoe crabs might appear when seen in their aquatic environment” she explained.

Celeste is ushering in the New Year with a solo exhibit of 35 pieces, predominantly collages, at the Bryant Library, 2 Paper Mill Road, Roslyn, which runs through February. Celeste is also a member of The Firefly Artists and her work is on display in their gallery on Main Street in Northport Village.

To learn more, visit  or contact Celeste at