Julia Cost has been a professional artist since 2005, painting landscapes, still lifes, and portraits in oil on canvas or watercolor on paper. She was born and raised in pastoral upcountry Maui, Hawaii, where she developed a deep connection to towering trees, open skies, sweeping ocean views, and the abounding food-rich plants that surrounded her. In 2011 Julia moved to Berkeley, where overgrown gardens, kite-flying kids, abundant farmers’ markets, and a visceral sense of community have inspired her paintings and captured her heart.
Julia was vegetarian starting in childhood and became vegan five years ago. She feels that every action is an extension of one’s values, and she wants eating to be an exercise in compassion, causing the least harm to the planet, animals, and her health. Veganism is the natural lifestyle for one’s values, and she finds much delicious fulfillment from a plant-based diet.
Julia sees each painting as an opportunity to interpret and re-create a tiny slice of the world, some bit that is fascinating, surprising, funny, poignant, sacred. She is captivated by momentary collisions of figures, environments, and objects, and by the power of images to suggest meaning. The subtleties of body language, arrangement of subjects within a scene, lighting, colors, and composition all create threads of a story. Julia is constantly in search of moments that require longer than a passing glance to appreciate.
Julia paints on commission for clients around the country and internationally. Her paintings are carried in the Curtis Wilson Cost Gallery in Kula, Hawaii, and are also on display at her web gallery, juliacost.com. Additionally, she works on a variety of artistic projects including prop styling, art teaching, sewing, graphic design, and illustration.
For commissions and more information, please email julia(at)costgallery.com.