Romanian painter, Cristina Simona Marian Albin, lost many cherished articles of her childhood when a fire burned down her house when she was 18. Her earlier years were filled with experimentation of many creative mediums: She played the piano and the accordion and was a student of Romania’s best painter, Elena Stoica. It was only a matter of time before she said she found herself wanting to relive those moments.

“When I lost contact with my childhood because of the fire and then when I went to college, every time I would find myself in a hard moment I would say I want to be a child again,” Marian Albin said. “I felt a need to remember my joyful drawings from the past and so I started to paint what I still remembered and how I used to paint when I was young.”

Her surrealist images, bending one’s imagination with bright colors and warm characters, became the prime object of her paintings. Her work has been well received in Romania and now in the States.

“I have had exhibitions in Romania, Europe, Africa, and now in Bozeman, Mont., and I get a similar reaction from everyone who sees my paintings,” Marian Albin said. “They all say that my art makes them happy and they smile and reminisce about their own childhoods. But I really love to let my paintings bring creative imaginations to the people who see them.”

Marian Albin also teaches many workshops with children and adults in order to illustrate the importance of a childlike imagination. She said that it is actually much easier to teach children, because they have no fear of creation. In turn their openness inspires the concepts of her own work.

“I dedicate my drawings to the children,” Marian Albin said. “I love being surrounded by them and in all of my illustrations I try to see the world through their eyes.”

The painter’s biggest project at the moment is a children’s book called “Traveling Clouds.” She has eight more pages of illustrations to go on her Kickstarter-funded book about the numerous adventures of a cloud soon to be written in both Romanian and English. Many of these illustrations and paintings are now on display at Beaucoup Gallery & Framing in the Emerson in her first exhibition in the United States, “Stories Without Words.”

“My paintings connect with everyone’s inner child and story and they are left with a good feeling,” Marian Albin said. “And in return I feel close with people. It is a cycle of happiness.”

Ali Everts is an avid art consumer who would love to hear your comments or suggestions. She may be reached at or 582-2632.