Carrie Adrian and Her Cat Max

A Collector’s Art Tardeada Visits The Home Of Carrie Adrian

By Elena Smith and Jonathan Peters

Pasadena.  Paintings and prints by Siqueiros, Frank Romero, and Rufino Tamayo hang on display at some of the most renowned museums in the world, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Guggenheim.  Yet works by these Latin American and Chicano masters can also be found in the South Pasadena home of Carrie Adrian.

Adrian has collected art for over thirty years, and has built a collection of several hundred pieces.  Though her collection is large, Adrian proudly says, “Every piece I love. I would not have bought it if I didn’t have a passion for it.”  

The collection centers on Cuban and Latin American art, but, as a whole, it is slightly eclectic.  Her collected works are a reflection of her personal and professional interest in Latin America.  Adrian explains, “I like figurative art, I like abstract, I like Cubism. I like Impressionism.”  She also notes, “Color and texture draw me.”

Adrian’s appreciation for art began as a child through her mother’s interest in the arts.  She acquired her first pieces when she was in college in Mexico from her roommate who was an artist.  Adrian notes, “They’re still hanging in my home.”

She built her collection during her career as an international corporate banker.  Adrian traveled throughout Latin America, from Argentina to Cuba, from Ecuador to Mexico.  She lived a total of nine years between Mexico and Ecuador.  Along the way, Carrie met many well-known artists and stuffed her suitcases with canvases and prints.

“I’ve finally recognized that I’m addicted,” Adrian admits with a laugh.  She surrounds herself with her art at her South Pasadena home.  Her walls are richly adorned with a salon-style display of paintings and prints.  The collection is so large that it cannot be fully hung on the walls.  Stacks of art works sit on her floor and dining room table, carefully preserved in archival slips.  

On Saturday, March 29, collectors and art lovers can view Adrian’s impressive collection.  Adrian has partnered with the Avenue 50 Studio, a non-profit 501(c)(3) art gallery in Highland Park, to give a tour of her art collection.  The fundraiser “A Collector’s Tardeada” will support Avenue 50 Studio, and its exhibitions and community outreach programs.  For more information, visit Avenue 50 Studio’s website at