PATRICIA VAN LUBECK
In such a short
time, Patricia Van Lubeck has quickly become a leading
neo-surreal artists. Born in Amsterdam in 1965, Patricia’s life has
quite recently changed dramatically. She used to be book-keeper until
2000 when she started the 21st century by becoming a full-time
professional artist. She moved to the Bay of Plenty in New Zealand in
2005. Since then her work has taken a new and exciting direction.
Although her style is often regarded as surreal, her work does not
strictly fall in that category. Her paintings are apparently simple in
composition but executed amazingly detailed and visually very dynamic.
Her paintings have realistic elements, but above all an alienating
atmosphere. Her works in recent years show landscapes and weird plant
species which she calls her psychedelic gardens.
`` I consider my work to be an exploration of the ways we experience our
environment. My inspiration comes from the ordinary things around me,
the artist in me just sees things in an unusual perspective. Picture a
baker looking at a corn field. He sees bread, cookies and pies. I see
shapes, patterns and colors. I like to zoom in on an everyday object
such as the pins of a hair brush and imagine a tiny landscape with rows
of hairy trees.’’
Most of her work is oil on canvas. But she has many talents and artistic
skills. She also makes illustrations for books and magazines and is
sculpting in bronze. Remarkably, Patricia is a self-taught and
self-starting artist. She says: ``This absence of formal tertiary
artistic education has allowed me to develop my own unique style. You
could describe my depictions as possible in theory, but improbable in
reality. Most of my subjects fall between the probable' and the
Patricia is a firm believer in the beauty of the detail. She cleverly
manages to lure the viewer deep into the finer details of her works. He
composition is simple but rich in detail and her style is dynamic, both
in subject and execution.
``I am always trying to achieve high contrast within an unlimited color
range. I love working with geometric patterns. Before I started painting
on canvas, my cars had always been willing victims to this passion.
Therefore patterns, natural or artificial, form the foundation of a lot
of my images.’’
Patricia sets a high benchmark for all her works and seeks to achieve a
high level of craftsmanship. It takes her up to eight hours just to
prepare the surface on some canvases. Then she oils up to 10 layers to
achieve rich colors and a smooth finish.
``Time is a very important factor in the creation of my work. I usually
work on 3-4 pieces at the same time. Subsequently each work takes a
couple of months from start to finish.”
Due to her time-consuming technique Patricia is only able to create
about 10 paintings a year. She loves painting at night in her rural Bay
of Plenty studio setting with no distractions – just the call of the
ruru (a New Zealand native owl) to keep her company. Patricia thrives on
the repetitiveness of her patterns. She feels the calming aura in
concentrating with a small brush in her ‘psychedelic garden’.
Since 2002, Patricia has exhibited in The Netherlands, Switzerland,
Portugal, Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand. She was finalist in the
2006 James Wallace Art Awards and reached the finals of the 2007 NZ
Painting and Printmaking Award where her painting was chosen as the
public’s favorite. She was runner-up in the 2006 Tivoli Audio PAL Case
design contest. And she was finalist in the 2010 Adam portraiture
Patricia’s work has been featured in books, magazines, advertisements
and on CD-covers.
Patricia Van Lubeck,
artwork by Patricia Van Lubeck