Laura Christensen is a visual artist who paints on recovered vintage portraits.  Also a woodworker, she constructs small shadow box frames and miniature cabinets to cradle the altered photographs.

Her artwork has been featured in galleries and museums, including Kidspace at MASS MoCA, Tweed Museum of Art, Bennington Museum, and Simmons College.

She recently won her second Artists’ Resource Trust (A.R.T.) Grant, a fund of the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation  in support of her book project,THEN AGAIN: Vintage Photography Reimagined by One Artist and Thirty-One Writers .This unique anthology was successfully funded by hundreds of fantastic backers on Kickstarter and is available now!

Laura Christensen


Over the last couple decades, I’ve been developing a technique for painting on vintage photographs salvaged from antiques stores, attics, and basements. These rediscovered studio portraits and snapshots are the basis of my art: both canvas and inspiration for my painting. By the time I find them, the original chains of personal connection have broken. Subjects are freed to become characters cast and costumed, players in another story that forms different bonds with new audiences.

I paint directly onto the surface of a photograph to cancel parts of images and conjure fresh illusions and metaphors. In doing so, I create seamless images that combine past and present, photograph and painting.

Apparitions of those who posed for a camera are still visible, but transformed, and performing fresh scenes of pathos and humor. Handcrafted cabinets serve as proscenium for their stage.


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Here’s what other people say about Laura’s work: TESTIMONIALS