Neptune Beach artist paints the bonds of life

For artist Rosana Casco McIntosh, painting is a passion that she uses to create a lasting legacy.

“Paintings often become heirlooms around which beautiful memories are created while beautifying the homes of future generations,” she said.

Rosana began her career as an art teacher at a school established for missionary children in her home country, Paraguay, South America. Her formative years were greatly influenced by the famous Paraguayan artist of Brazilian origin Livio Abramo and she obtained her degree in Fine Arts from the National University of Asunción.

She was well recognized in Paraguay as a talented young artist frequently participating in art exhibitions alongside the best artists of Paraguay.

She met her future husband Mark McIntosh while he was undergoing a medical exchange program at Bautista Hospital in Asunción. The Baptist Medical Center in Jacksonville provided much needed spiritual, financial, and leadership support during the early years of Bautista Hospital’s development.

Rosana graduated from Columbia International University in South Carolina with a Masters in Missions. Mark and Rosana stayed in touch and developed their relationship while he completed his residency at Duke University. They married in 1992.

The couple have three children. The eldest, Ana, is completing her master’s degree in architecture at MIT, while Stephen works as a software engineer at a financial firm in New York. Susana, the youngest, is pursuing a double degree in Political Science and International Studies from the University of Florida, and is currently studying abroad at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Although Rosana continued to paint and teach, most of her time was spent educating her children. Only now, as the children pursue their passions, can she pursue hers and refocus on her art. Mark, who is an emergency physician at UF Health Jacksonville, supports and encourages her as she rebuilds her career and explores new avenues of artistic expression.

Rosana and Mark moved to Neptune Beach four years ago, purchasing one of the first homes designed by famed Jacksonville architect William Morgan for local legend Leonard “Doc” Silvers. The McIntoshes love the home’s unique design with its ribbon windows, exposed beams, and terrazzo floors, and they are committed to preserving the home’s authentic character.

“I come from a family of architects. I love this house. We live in a work of art, ”said Rosana. “Mark grew up in a mid-century house in Sanford, Florida that was also designed by a well-known local architect, reminding him of his childhood. ”

They commissioned Jacksonville Beach architect Frank Spencer III to design an addition intended to serve as an art studio that would complement Morgan’s design. Rosana said that many home renovators try to keep up with current trends, rather than adopting the style and integrity of the original design. The exterior of the art studio matches the original brickwork of the main house and inside, the roof is supported by the same structural beam system designed by Morgan.

All colors, materials, fixtures and finishes have been selected to match the aesthetics and intentions of the original design. Large windows flood the house with indirect natural light, ideal for painting. The annex became the art studio and the main house became his gallery. Rosana likes having the new space to work.

According to her website,, her work reflects the fact that art isn’t really about one thing.

“It is the symbol of something else. It is a story that finds its own identity through what is originally brought to painting. It extends the spiritual exploration of how life is meditation, a reflection of what is sometimes transparent, sometimes open, and ultimately connects the viewer to my art. It is a celebration of how everything in life is connected.

Rosana’s website lists the different places in which she has exhibited her work. In the past she has had paintings in art galleries located in Oxford, England; Asunción, Paraguay; Orlando and Jacksonville. Art lovers and buyers often find her by word of mouth, asking for commission work.

“I love to paint and use lines and colors to create feelings of belonging, togetherness and oneness,” she said of some of her more abstract works. Her recent work demonstrates her love for the beaches of the First Coast, which she tries to walk daily.

At the beach, she focuses on the play of light, noticing and photographing the reflections of people in shallow water at different times of the day and in different seasons. “I take pictures of what most people might not notice,” Rosana said. “Instead of the person, I focus on their reflections in the water which are transient, shimmering, and in a quite spiritual way.”

Her most recent painting that she shared with me shows two people standing in a thin puddle of water. The composition invites the viewer to see the scene through the eyes of the artist: the characters are not figures, but rather blurred reflections in the water, capturing a moment in time that will never happen again from the scene. same way.

These pieces invite the viewer to imagine themselves or someone they know as part of the scene. It is a play of light, water and color, where the essence of life’s moments is celebrated on the canvas.

“I take pictures of what most people don’t look at! I’m looking at their reflection in the water, not the person most people expect, ”she said of her current job.

A recent painting shows a very clear view of the legs reflecting in a shallow puddle as it leaves out people most people could focus on. It is the reflection that she sees that gives her painting such a unique look and feeling.

Bill Longenecker is a resident of Neptune Beach and a longtime contributor to Shorelines. Send your comments to [email protected]

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