Author: Art Review City

Johan Wahlstrom

Artist Q&A with Johan Wahlstrom

Stockholm-born Johan Wahlstrom is an artist who is making a conscious effort to describe the social and political landscape of our contemporary world. His ironic series Social Life gives a perfect sense both from a conceptual as a formal point of view of this estrangement. He is a magnificent observer of our social lives.

“Turmoil”, urethane and color pigments on canvas, 62 x 54 in | 157 x 137 cm, 2020

Who is your favorite artist of all time?

Leon Golub

How did you become a professional artist?

I am the 5th generation of artists on my mother’s side and you could say it was in my blood from an early age. I have always loved expressing myself through the arts. It started with painting, went into Rock ‘n’ Roll, and then back to painting.

What are the influences and inspirations in your work?

Today’s society, news, my travels, and people that I meet. I see myself as a journalist portraying what I see and hear through my paintings.

Johan Wahlstrom self-portrait.

When is a piece finished for you?

That is always a difficult question that I constantly battle with. Normally it is finished when I feel that the painting is talking to me and makes me feel.

What’s different about your current body of work?

Most likely many of my distorted face paintings are less obvious, less in your face, thanks to adding more abstraction. 

Tell us about a few of your career highlights or moments that have greatly affected your career?

Moving to New York five years ago certainly affected my career, as did my two man show “From 1960’s Celebrities To Today’s Social Media, From Warhol To Wahlstrom” with Andy Warhol in 2018.  I have also been part of group shows in Europe … Click here to read more

Marina Levitan

Artist Q&A with Marina Levitan

“From My Window”, oil on canvas, 11 x 12 in | 29 x 30 cm, 2020

Why did you become an artist?

I became an artist because from my childhood I was intrigued by intricacies of the form and the color, the poetry of shapes. I could spend hours watching intersections between objects and forms created by different types of light. The flow of my life took me away from painting, although I learned in a art school while attending highschool, after immigration from USSR to Israel I decided to tike more practical path of graphic design but after visiting Italy at 2009 I understood that I have to return to art and took a 4 years masterclass in Jerusalem Studio School as a second education and this decision transformed my life.

How is your work different than everything out there?

I think that drawing is very personal, even intimate not unlike a fingerprint, because it reflects the way the person sees the surrounding world. As every person is unique, also his or her perspective is unique. Our perception of the surrounding is not entirely visual, it is affected by our thoughts and feelings in that single moment of perception. Drawing is trying to capture this single unique moment of our life in the way that over mediums are unable to.

Marina Levitan

What’s different about your current body of work?

My current body of work is different for obvious reasons, that lately my life and surrounding reality has changed drastically, along with my perception of it. Last half a year I’ve barely left home because my family members are in a high risk group. Previously I preferred to draw landscapes and express my perception of nature. Now my body of work is limited to … Click here to read more

Gareth Edwards

Artist Q&A with Gareth Edwards

Gareth Edwards is a contemporary landscape painter. He is a graduate of Goldsmiths College, an elected RWA Academician, and is a long time resident of St Ives’ historic Porthmeor Studios, previously occupied by luminaries of British painting such as Patrick Heron and Ben Nicholson.He is a sessional tutor at the Newlyn School of Art and a prominent member of the Newlyn Society of Artists.

“The Great Lakes”, oil on paper, 16 x 17 in | 42 x 44 cm, 2020

Who is your favorite artist of all time?

Cy Twombly and JWM Turner have both been hugely influential to my work, from decades ago to the present day. They are the lode stones of my practice and will continue to be so for the immediate future. I try to get to as many shows of their work as possible, to accompany my large but still growing book collection on both artists. 

How did you become a professional artist?

On the day I graduated from my Art History degree, I set up an easel in my rented bedsit and bought the materials to start painting. I have never stopped painting. Fourteen years later the Hart Gallery, London, put my work into the London Art Fair and a really well-known fashion designer bought two pieces. I went on to have ten one-person shows with Hart Gallery over the next fourteen years, until the owners retired.

What are the influences and inspirations in your work?

They are inspired by ‘Emotional Weather’ – the paintings are poetical and mysteriously evanescent. They are abstracted landscapes with a cool and subtle palette built to seduce the viewer into a half-remembered space of subtlety engineered light, the light of hope. Each painting is a poem in paint, a poem of light, space, landscape and mystery. My studio … Click here to read more