Elsa Mora was born in Holguin, Cuba; and currently lives and works in Mount Tremper, New York, United States. She attended first The Vocational School of Arts, in Holguín; and later The Professional School of Visual Arts, in Camagüey, both in Cuba.
Her work can be found as part of the collections of museums such as the Museum of Latin American Art, in Long Beach, California; the National Museum of Women in the Arts, in Washington DC; and at The Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, Eugene, Oregon. She has participated in exhibitions such as Utopia/Post-Utopia, at the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art. State University of New York, New Paltz, New York; and Inside/Outside: Contemporary Cuban Art, at the Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, among many others.
Mora’s work is inspired by nature, and partially based on the long tradition of botanical illustration. She takes passages from the natural world as similes for stages in human life. She is exploring the concept of transformation from a symbiotic point of view, blending vegetation and humans. Her distinctive ‘women’ are created with mixed elements from both worlds; her female torsos have either faces constructed of groupings of birds, or arrangements of flowers for heads resulting in extraordinary surrealistic creatures.
Her work often takes from autobiographical sources. Her earlier pieces were collages in which she combined personal artifacts with photos and painted elements. Later on, she relied more on painting or drawing, making reference to a personal transformation, illustrated through her hybrid beings.