I grew up in Florence where I studied art to undergraduate level, then architecture in Birmingham and Conservation of Historic Buildings at Bath University. I worked as a conservation architect in the Midlands for several years before dedicating myself to painting.

Possibly due to my architectural background I am fascinated by space and its qualities- I love both natural and built environments, the feelings they provoke and the meaning they contain. In the studio I reimagine what has captured my imagination and relay the essence, mostly in abstract form and sometimes surrealism. 

I hope that my reinventions give restitution to the ordinary scenes I depict and offer the viewer an ambiguity that they can consider and resolve themselves.

Presently my explorations have taken me closer to my roots: the places I have inhabited and aspects of the Italian diaspora which explore the role of women’s culture, tradition and transmigration.

Generally I mainly paint in oils, sketch in charcoals or inks and and practice printmaking which I also love. I find that printmaking is away of thinking things through and so really valuable and fun.

On the Seven Estuary- one of my favourite places.

...’Cristina Gardiner evokes sense of place with stunning landscapes.’ (Hugh Pearman – RIBA Journal Eyeline Competion 2020)


Diploma of Applied Art Istituto d’ Arte di Porta Romana, Florence, Italy

Bachelor of Art, Post Graduate in Architecture, and Master in Design and Theory of Architecture, Birmingham University

Masters of Science in Conservation of Historic Building, Bath University

Exhibitions and competition entries:

2024 29/02 – 06/04 – RBSA Birmingham- The Printing Prize, selected

2023 5/09 – 18/10 RBSA Birmingham- The Drawing Prize, selected

2023 – 12 January-17 February – Worcester OPEN Climate Change Edition Group Exhibition at THE ART HOUSE, Worcester

2022 – 15 September/October – RBSA Birmingham – Prize Exhibition- selected

2022 – August – Worcestershire Open studios

2022 – 13/23 May – Elmslie House, Malvern – The Space Between – Group Exhibition

2022 – 15/24 April – Borlaise Smart Room, St Ives – InSight – Group Exhibition

2021 – November – A Pickled Thought Gallery, Totness – Group Printing Exhibition

2021 – August – Worcestershire Open Studios

2021 – July and August – Greenman Gallery – Buxton – 100 years of the Pinnacle Club for Women’s Climbers

2021 – Eyeline International Competition RIBA Journal – Shortlisted

2021 – June/ July – RBSA Birmingham – Friend’s Exhibition – selected

2020 – Eyeline International Competition RIBA Journal– Practitioner’s 3rd Place 

2020 – June/July – RBSA Birmingham – Friend’s Exhibition – selected


Centrespace, Bristol – April 2024 TBC