A sort of artist's statement

 

My creative process is mostly intuitive and irrational, I only partially paint with my head, much flows out of the hand, "it paints itself".

 

Virtuosity and dexterity are the enemies of honesty, or so I believe.

 

Lofty ideas, historical themes, religious or political propaganda, romantic sentiments, literature, heroic topics, visual gags, witty stuff seldom make a painting better.

 

The most interesting topics for me are the human figure and the human condition. They could be funny, strange, sad, idiosyncratic, macabre, sarcastic, ironic, etc.

 

For me painting has to be a feast for the eyes and has to have an intellectual component, a message, an imagery that stands for something and triggers associations, thought, feelings, moods.

 

One of the most interesting things in painting is being able to follow the process. The painting process should be visible. That's why painters look at other painter's work. The onlooker's eye has to fill in the gaps. That makes the difference between a visually boring and an interesting painting.

 

The ability to see and discern quality comes with time.

 

Limitations trigger the creative process.

 

Copying and studying reality is a means to increase your visual vocabulary. Sooner or later you have to go beyond that.

 

Honest creation is never free of self doubt and momentary desperation.

 

Doing art is often an egotistical activity, it has no practical meaning – except you make money with it... It might be the peak of civilization and luxury to occupy yourself with something beyond all practicality. You have to do it against all odds...

I believe you have to be obsessively driven by a passion. This should be the priority in your life. Everything else comes after. Life without passion is but bleak monotony or latent, continuous desperation.

 

These are randomly listed principles I try to follow while painting (but sometimes I don't):

 

Start with an oversized brush.

 

Try to develop the painting in one continuous workflow. (I do not always succeed.)

 

Keep a light hand. Paint fluidly but without dexterity and virtuosity.

 

Work from contrast and start with the biggest form. Contrast is form, color is tone.

 

Don't worry about mixing beautiful colors. Use color without premeditation according to it's tone value. The colors are going to mix themselves accordingly.

 

Keep it a bit rough and spontaneous. Do not lick the painting into a smooth surface.

 

Anything too sweet causes nausea. Bring some disharmony, some break into the overall image.

 

Keep it simple, be minimalistic, be direct. Don't overload the painting with too many ideas.

 

Work in series since there is always a version that is better than the others. In the end you can pick the best.

 

You can go back to a previous version and develop it further without being afraid to destroy something “nice”.