Anyone else finding their spirit pummelled by the relentless superficiality and emptiness of contemporary culture?
I thought as much!
I really wanted to do something very pure and truthful to counteract all of that barrenness. I needed to create an antidote for nothingness. Something real.
Fortunately, I had the good luck to meet this fascinating Romanian woman, Amalia, in the south of France. A very smart, very humble person... she just radiated authenticity, decency and a very genuine, honest kind of beauty. But Amalia has a certain gravitas to her, too. An earthiness and strength that only comes as the result of real life experience and perseverance... all of the joy and heartbreak, triumphs and disappointments that define each of our lives. And she carried it all with grace, dignity, humility, charm and a delightful, insightful humour. Very much that essence of humanity and the human spirit.
Amalia's particular charisma is how she effortlessly embodies and conveys these deeply human, universal qualities simply by being herself. That's what these paintings are about. They are not portraits of a single person in that sense; but rather they are a means of catching and transmitting those mercurial qualities of being which transcend any one person. They connect us to something in all of us. Something we instinctively recognize. Something good.
And who isn't ready for a bit of that in their lives these days?