Enrique Flores-Galbis is a painter and a novelist. Born in Havana, Cuba, he left in 1961 with Operation Pedro Pan, arriving alone in South Florida at the age of 9. His second book 90 Miles to Havana was based on the events that led to his departure and the life he encountered in the U.S.
This current series of paintings grew out of the painter’s visit to Cuba after a thirty-five year absence. The resulting collision of memory and fact found its expression in the paintings of Havana streets with their sun struck, salt bit facades buttressed by the resonant, steadfast shadows. As a child he and his mother skirted the same blue shadows on their way to his aunt’s painting studio on Obispo street in old Havana. Placed in between them as they took turns painting each other, he was intoxicated by the signal aroma of turpentine and oil, and fascinated by the buttery paint and brilliant colors whirling about their palettes.
The paintings of the Cuban landscape with their royal palms and the ever-present Ceibu Bulls serve as reminders of the mysterious almost magnetic pull the land has on its sons and daughters.
Enrique began his study of painting at the Art Students League of New York, with noted portraitist Daniel Greene, and at the National Academy of Design with Raymond Everett Kinstler. He received his MFA from Parson’s School of Design where he studied with Paul Resika, and Leland Bell.
A portrait and landscape painter for over twenty-five years, his work can be found in corporate, university, and private collections throughout the country.
His first novel, Raining Sardines, (07,) Roaring Brook Press, received the Americas Honors for Latin American Lit. 90 Miles to Havana, (10,) was awarded the prestigious Pura Belpre Honors Award.