Luminara Florescu is a British born artist, curator, artist mentor and mother based in rural Somerset. Her art practice occupies the intersection of art, advocacy, and activism and is deeply rooted in her lived experience as a disabled and neurodivergent artist.
After graduating from Kingston University with a BA (Hons) in Fine Art in 1999 she continued to live and exhibit in London including creating short films for Channel 4 with her film Home Town being selected by the British Film Council to represent emerging British artists in Milan. Her limited edition artist book, Noble Offerings is also part of the Artists Books collection at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London. After becoming a mother in 2001, Luminara lived in Cardiff, South Wales. In 2005, her film script Penny Collectors was awarded a Production Grant by the Welsh Film Council and was produced by Those People Productions. The film was shown at the Welsh Film Festival in 2005 and won the Best New Director award.
After taking a career break to raise and Unschool her children, Luminara returned to her art practice in 2018 securing a Somerset Art Works, Creative Pathways Artist Bursary. Intricately weaving diverse processes and mediums, Luminara began creating immersive and interactive artworks that aimed to captivate and challenge. Embracing gentle protest and creative activism, she works with themes of rest, slowing down, and resisting hyper-productivity as vital tools in the fight against climate change.
Luminara is the co-founder and leads the pioneering Art Behind Bars programme in partnership with Shepton Mallet Prison. This initiative not only redefines art's role outside of the white walls of the gallery environment, but also serves as a platform for emerging artists' voices to be heard through exhibitions such as B-Wing (2019), Artist Prison Residencies (2021), and Outside In (2022).
Luminara has been awarded a number of grants and commissions to develop projects including the Freedom Learning project (Somerset Art Works, Artist Micro Commission), And the Children Shall Lead- Giant Board Game (Somerset Art Works, Artist Project Development Bursary), B-Wing exhibition (Arts Council England Project Grant), Contract of Self Care (a-n Artist Information Company's Time, Space, Money artist bursary), Rest As Protest (Develop Your Creative Practice (DYCP) Grant.) and most recently the Somerset Film, Artist in Residence film commission for her film installation – Social Gardening (The Mind At Rest).
Born London 1972
BA (Hons) in Fine Art Kingston University
Arts Award Advisor, Trinity College London
Co-Founder & Creative Director of HEARTHSTONE Ways CIC
2022 Arts Council England - Developing Your Creative Practice (DYCP) grant.
2022 Somerset Art Works - Project Development Bursary.
2021 a-n Artist Information Company - Time, Space, Money artist bursary.
2021 SEED Sedgemoor - Artist Commission.
2020 Somerset Art Works - Artist Micro Commission.
2019 Arts Council England - Project Grant for B-Wing exhibition.
2019 The Ganes Trust - Artist Grant.
2018 Somerset Art Works - Creative Pathways Bursary
2022 Outside In Group exhibition & events at Shepton Mallet Prison, Somerset - Curator & Artist.
Supported by OPEN Mental Health Community Grant.
2022 Artist Prison Residencies (Online) programme – Co-curator.
2021 Artist Prison Residencies Shepton Mallet Prison, Somerset - Co-curator & Artist in Residence.
Supported by Shepton Mallet Town Council Community Grant & OPEN Mental Health Community Grant.
2021 Pathways to Happiness Community Creative Wellbeing project, HEARTHSTONE Ways CIC - Curator & Lead Artist.
Supported by Somerset Skills & Learning Community Project Grant.
2020 – Virtual Happenings Group exhibition for Virtual Fringe Arts Bath Festival - Curator & Artist.
2019 – B-Wing Group exhibition & events at Shepton Mallet Prison. Supported by ‘Lottery Funding from Arts Council England’ - Co-curator & Artist.
Exhibitions & Residencies
2023 - Rest As Protest (Pink Haze) - Evolver Magazine prize exhibition, Yeovil ArtSpace
2021 – End of the World Tarot – Restrictions exhibition, Clayhill Arts Somerset
2019 – Love is Blind – City of Secrets exhibition, Liberty House, Bristol
2019 – Artist Residency - Mothership, Dorest.
2018 – Hare Woman (Julian Cox) – Book Launch in collaboration with author and historian Andrew Pickering.
2018 – Fetus Totem (Green) – Bruton Art Society Exhibition 65th Annual show Bruton, Somerset.
2018 – Fetus Totem – Arts Open Exhibition, Town Hall Arts Trowbridge, Wiltshire.
2018 – Domestic Bliss – HONESTY SHOP part of the ‘The Land We Live – The Land We Left Behind’ Exhibition – Hauser & Wirth Gallery, Somerset.
CAREER BREAK DUE TO CARING RESPONSIBILITIES
2007 – One Year Artist residency – Those People Productions, Cardiff, South Wales.
2005 – ‘Penny Collectors‘ short film script award production grant by Welsh Film Council.
2004 – Work featured in AN Magazine
2003 – ‘Mother‘ – Chapter Gallery, ‘Experimentica’ exhibition, Cardiff, South Wales.
2002 – ‘Home Town‘ – chosen by the British Arts Council to represents emerging British Artist in Milan, Italy.
2002 – ‘Home Town‘ – Gallery 39, Cardiff, South Wales.
2001 – ‘Noble Offerings‘ Book Art piece became part of the permanent collection at Victoria & Albert Museum, London.
2000 – Curator and exhibiting artist – Domestic Gallery “Here & There” exhibition, London.
2000 – Three months residency at the Accademia di Belle Arti di Brera, Milan, Italy