Stettheimer received training in painting at the Art Students League of New York, where she studied from 1892 to 1895.
At the outbreak of World War I in 1914, Florine moved to New York, where she hosted a salon for modernists in Manhattan together with her sisters. Among their most frequent guests were the artists Marcel Duchamp and Marsden Hartley and the author and critic Carl Van Vechten.
Stettheimer often painted portraits of her well-known visitors, and the group was also her primary audience. After an unsuccessful gallery exhibition in 1916, Stettheimer only sporadically showed her work in public. Instead, she chose to pursue her art privately, developing a unique style.
Thus year after year, over a period of two decades, Stettheimer entered her work at the Annual exhibitions of the Society of Independent Artists. She also continued to refine her style in rendering highly personal self-portraits, including a self-portrait in the nude, and group portraits, that included her own family.
Stettheimer created the sets and costumes for the 1934 production of Four Saints in Three Acts, an opera by Virgil Thomson, that included a libretto by Gertrude Stein.
Florine also assisted her sister Carrie in the creation of the Stettheimer Dollhouse, now in the collection of the Museum of the City of New York. The house is a whimsical depiction of an upper-class residence, filled with works by Stettheimer's artist friends, including William Zorach, Alexander Archipenko, Marcel Duchamp, and Gaston Lachaise.
Family Portrait, II
Portrait of Myself
Ashbury Park South
Self-Portrait with Palette (Painter and Faun)
Euridice and her Snake, Two Tango Dancers and St. Francis. Costume design for the artist's ballet "Orphée of the Quat'z Arts"
Costume design (Nijinsky) for artist's ballet "Orphée of the Quat-z-arts"
Picnic at Bedford Hills
Portrait of My Sister, Carrie W. Stettheimer
The Cathedrals of Broadway
Costume design (Aphrodite on a Dolphin...) for artist's ballet "Orphée of the Quat-z-arts"
Nude Study, Standing with Hand to Shoulder
Portrait of a Woman with Red Hair
Portrait of Our Nurse, Margaret Burgess
Portrait of My Mother
Though Florine's paintings vibrate with color and life, Stettheimer herself was a shy artist, uninterested in popular recognition.