Members' Artists Statements
As an artist I like to create images that recall beauty, seeking to capture the contrast between illuminated subjects and their surroundings, whether they are from abstract concepts or figurative images.
I like to work mostly with oil, and in order to achieve the illusion of light I use texture to layer the painting from dark to light.
My photography, painting and collage are inspired by a variety of landscapes, in particular my birth country, France, Mexico where I lived for some time, and my adopted country, Canada.
I always travel with my camera looking for revealing images and when I return to my studio I choose the pictures that best caught the mood or the spirit of a particular moment and place.
To share such moments with others I paint them with acrylics on canvas or create original collages with Japanese paper, transfers and other elements.
I have exhibited my photographs, paintings and collages in various galleries in Toronto, most frequently with Art Gala Forum.
One of my artworks figures in Frank Gehry’s private collection and several of my paintings have gone as far as Japan. I had my first Solo Show in November 2016.
Over the past few years I have been experimenting with various facets of painting. Through abstraction and using different techniques and mediums, I explore my imagination to give the viewer energy full of color and texture.
I have always been interested in painting and drawing. In 2014, I was fortunate to be accepted into the adult art program at Central Technical School and studied there for 4 years. I have continued to take workshops and courses in various mediums and subject matter. In spite of trying different subjects and styles, I always return to the human figure and in particular the portrait. My goal is not to create an exact portrait of the person but to capture an emotion that the sitter evokes. My work has been exhibited in group shows and juried shows in Toronto and is in private collections across Canada and in Europe. In 2019, my work was exhibited in The Kingston Prize Exhibition.
As far as I can remember, I have enjoyed painting. I credit both of my parents for my early love of art. My mother painted and my father who is a Geologist used to bring home fossils and stones which started a vivid interest for textures.
Abstract and figural expressionism provides a context for my artistic expressions which are inspired by hieroglyphs and fossils, a reference for simplified and two-dimensional natural forms.
In the last 10 years, I have been perfecting my own style by concentrating on colours and textures.
Each of my paintings expresses a specific moment in my life and with the uses of forms, textures and colours, I attempt to capture what lies at the very centre of transformative spiritual experiences and emotions. For me each layer of the different colours on my paintings is a symbol of how life experiences change each individual.
Being an artist is not just about her work on the wheel, her pencil on the page or her chisel on the stone. It was bigger than that. It’s her thoughts, plans, the vision she has for her work, and the life she has lived, her history and her choices for the future that fuels her creative life. We all have the same training, but our individual aptitudes form each chunk of clay or each canvas in a very different style, a product of our individuality. Hardship, damaged work, challenging forms drove her to dig deep and find the real meaning each piece has for her. The struggle leads her to better work, learning and finessing through the challenges chosen.
Nieves found after experiencing close personal loss, this circumstance represented significant challenge to her way of understanding the world and her place in it. The change was not going to be about returning to the same life but discovering life changing shifts in thinking and relating to the world and her new reality. Her desire to make it deeply meaningful, optimistic choices and to convey the better and brighter aspects of human behaviour, to reinforce an appreciation of life, priorities, warmer, more intimate close relationships, group support, renew sense of personal strength, and see new possibilities.
I am intrigued with natural forms: the twist of a dried leaf, the contour of a muscle, the silhouette of a branch. Colours, especially intense or deep colours in all their variety of shades and tones, give me immense visceral pleasure. These are the visual treasures I attempt to portray in my work. The challenge of rendering realistically the features of a specific human face in a way which pleases the sitter brings me joy. Using oil pastels I draw the human form in symbolic surroundings to portray feelings we all experience: wonder, sorrow, mystery, etc. In watercolour and acrylic I paint the beauty of flowers in their immense variety of shape and colour. I chose flowers as my subject when I was told that those of us who see flowers first thing in the morning are happier during the day than those who do not. At present I am also attempting to portray these natural forms in a more abstract fashion so as to give the impression of the displays of nature without using specific details.
My Wildflower series is a study of colours and perspective. Lines and
dots create the entangled chaos of foliage and florets. A myriad of colours
peek through the vegetation. Pink, orange, coral and red fields of
wildflowers evolve above the undergrowth of stalks and greenery.
The midground becomes a random pattern of circles fading into the horizon
of receding dots of muting colours. Dotted skies rise into the darkening
upper echelons alluding to a sense of atmospheric height and space.
I've tried to capture the essentially frenzied wildness of nature on a very