San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Jaguar’s play

From the print edition

The subjects of Guanacaste artist Susan Adams range from topes, or horse parades, to people, places and all kinds of animals. Though portraiture is her primary means of expression, she finds nature exquisite and at all times perfect. Having been a schoolteacher and book illustrator, Adams hopes that future generations and technology will correct what past generations have done to destroy large parts of our planet. She strives to take you into her paintings to enjoy a moment in nature. 

Of her newest exhibit, “Costa Rica Mía,” Adams says, “How can one capture the essence of Costa Rica on canvas, from its magnificent nature to the people, their culture and traditional way of life? For this show I have selected subjects from my immediate world here in Guanacaste: the oxen, solid, loyal and patient, pulling stones out of the creek, uprooting trees and hauling carts off fence-posts at the edge of Playa Tamarindo.

I am constantly amazed at nature’s complexity and brilliance, hoping to capture a moment that connects us to a jaguar lying unaware or playing.” Her techniques include stucco, gesso, acrylics, metallic paints and oils, and her images come to life on canvasses, banana papers, and even doors and windows.

According to interior architect Xyanna Bateau, Adams brings the real and natural images of Costa Rica to life in her work. With her unique skillset and talent for color, shadow and natural nuance, Adams brings “the soft, the wild, and the real” to one’s interior. The translucent jungle leaf in a mist, the curious face of the monkey and the haunting gaze of the jaguar all emerge from her hand to create realistic images of Costa Rican culture.

You can meet her in person at the opening of “Costa Rica Mía,” on Saturday, August 4 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. The exhibit continues through September 14 at the Hidden Garden Art Gallery, located 5 kilometers west of the Daniel Oduber Liberia International Airport (towards the beach). For more info, visit or call 8386-6872 or 8386-6968.

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