A portfolio of oil and watercolor paintings representing the vidiv beauty of wildlife, dramatic flowers, light-filled landscapes, and the artist’s mythology based on dreams and inner visions
Wild and Civilized
I am drawn to explore both the outer beauty as well as the inner world of my subjects. I want to find out who they are and what is their message. One of my most favorite subjects is the animal world. Wild Life. I see wildlife as important as our human world though quite different in many aspects. We humans are one of the many species here on this planet, and a very creative one! We have invented and designed truly amazing things. The list is every long: extraordinary technologies, endless varieties of food, living spaces, clothing and hair styles. We developed medical inventions bordering on the miraculous to fix and sometimes replace body parts. Create music through captivating sounds with our vocal cords and instruments that can affect us deeply. We have figured out how to cultivate flowers, gardens, and grow large quantities of food. Have the ability to speak different languages as that we can understand each other. And long time ago, we have developed writing and reading to pass on what we had learned and observed. Quite impressive, really.
But what about the natural world? Trees, butterflies, tigers, foxes, elephants – the stunning variety filling this planet? I love and respect nature and its creatures. If you have a pet, a dog or cat, and if you love your animal companion, most likely you can tell that they are smart and loving and they too have their own little quirks and idiosyncrasies. They are individuals and not only a cat or a dog. A lion or a fox is not simply one species. In other words, they are not only their body. They too are feeling beings who can be peaceful and happy, or upset, sad, and angry, just like we can.
Do we loose something by cutting ourselves off from nature so much? I believe we do. We try to replenish ourselves by going into nature: to smell, taste, and feel the thrill of the wild. To absorb its awe inspiring beauty. Feel the cold bite of the winter breeze, plunge into a river, lake, or ocean. Lay down on the grass and forget about everything else. We want to be connected to a larger world, and we often call it a vacation. Of course with the added option of going back into our comfortable hotel room, or a cozy cabin to make a fire, and finish the day with perhaps a gourmet dinner. Maybe a glass of wine. We need nature but I believe it is not only for vacations. We need it essentially. Being part of a larger world makes us happier.
Primal Qualities and Archetypes
How we relate to animals maybe shows something about how we relate to parts of us that resemble them. Do we have a tiger in us, a fox, or a bear? I think we do. Sometimes there is a butterfly in us, a gazelle, or a hawk. Sometimes a pack of wolves howling. I am interested in exploring this through my paintings because I see that the wisdom and qualities of the wild are worth cultivating. Fairytales often use animal characters for this reason. And fairytales speak to us, perhaps even when we are not children anymore. Portraying wildlife for me is an archetypal language to reconnect with the innocence, pure vitality, playfulness, and also the raw elements of our being.
Dreams and Visions
I also love painting my own dream world and inner visions to give form to the landscape of my inner archetypes and mythology. A young girl with bees and flowers is reminiscent of a fairy tale. It explores the meeting between innocence and wisdom. An exotically beautiful woman with a hummingbird and flowers speaks about an aspect of the feminine where the inner freedom of the wild and the feminine spirit connect. A baby floating in a womb of golden light surrounded by the ocean and its creatures explores our origin both as a fetus and a species through our interconnectedness to everything.
My inspiration for painting is both finding the beauty and aliveness that saturates everything living, as well as reconnecting with the lost parts of ourselves be it internal like in a dream or external like encountering the “other” face to face, soul to soul.