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What Inspires me?

Interview by Rodrigo de Torre – Creativoshoy

Jezel is a London born artist living in Paris. In this post, I have decided to use the model of an interview. I think Jezel is a sincere person, direct, with strong principles.

R.- In your paintings a part of your family background is appreciated. Isn´t it?

J.- I have a mix cultural heritage; I am of Caribe Indian, French and African descendant; I am a British Artist, born in London and living in Paris and I have travelled a lot. So as you can see, the inspiration comes from several sources. It is Universal. My Mother gave me encouragement and some principle technics when I was a child.

R.-Bright, cheerful colors. It seems that you want to catch a specific time?

J.-My work has evolved in recent years, more complex, more movement, deeper horizons, compared to my earlier works. The light has become more predominant and more present, as I have studied nature in different lighting. I now incorporate the light of the early morning, the light of the afternoon and early sunset; this has resulted in me using warmer tones at times. Nature changes under the different types of light during the day, therefore creating other types of atmospheres.

R.- Why do you opt for acrylic paint ?

J.- I enjoy working with acrylic because it is a spontaneous medium, which corresponds to my personality. It helps me to get my primary ideas down without hesitation. It is also quick to dry and has strong rich colors. But at the same time, much of my secondary work involves several layers of brush and knife strokes in order to achieve texture, layers and movement in my work. I mix the acrylic for textured effect with thickeners such as gloss etc. working and reworking the painting until the subject comes to life.

R.-Living in Paris, essentially a large urban city. Where did you get the inspiration for the paintings ?

J.- Paris is not a concrete jungle. Paris has a lot of beautiful parks, gardens and has even some cascades in some wild parks. Not all the parks are artificially landscaped. Regardless, if I want to leave Paris, it takes 15 minutes by car to see the countryside. I have travelled all over France and seen many cities. I have travelled many times through Europe and I have been to many the Caribbean Islands and parts of North Africa. So my inspiration can come from my own back garden, a Parisian Park, a tropical rain forest, a coastline, the British countryside, anywhere.

R.-Do you remember about your visit to Florence and what it meant to you ?

J.- I went to Florence as part of my Art studies when I was 16. I was overwhelmed by its beauty and its 14 century heritage. As most people know, Florence is the birthplace of the renaissance. To leave London to visit Florence, was as though I was going back into time. As a young student, I was surrounded by most marvelous of art and architecture. I discovered a platform for some of the greatest treasures in the world and I was overwhelmed by this beauty. Following this trip, I became passionate about the renaissance period.

R.- And your visit to Spain?

J.- In my early 20’s, I travelled from Paris by car with a group of friends through Spain until we arrived in Almeria, where I was surrounded by the most amazing landscapes. Almeria has a unique, beautiful and breathless landscape. It has a surprising landscape, with its rock formations, hidden coves, sometimes dessert like formation. From that moment it time, I decided that I wanted to express my own lyricism, my own emotions and combine that with my life experience through nature; landscapes and seascapes.

R.- Do you think a painter… born or made?

J.- You obviously need basic technics, skills and to understand the products. I have always said, that my Mother taught me my primary skills until I went on to study the Arts. Afterwards, I developed my own message through my experiences and my personal interpretation of how I see nature. The initial technics that were taught to me have been worked and developed every day through trial, error and observation.

R.- What´s for you a work of art?

J.- It is not for me to define what is or what is not a work of art! It is subjective. It is the individual interpretation of what one sees when one looks upon a piece of work and judges with one’s social background, one’s cultural heritage, one’s religious or political views etc; and as Oscar Wild once said “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”. All I can say is that I am very open to many forms, periods and styles of Art in sculpture, architecture, photography, painting etc. Something has to move me or touch me, whether it is the texture, the atmosphere, the subject, the technic or the color.

R.- What would you like to achieve with your paintings?

J.- I don’t want to think negative or be self-analytic when I am painting. I don’t want to question what I am doing. I want to be true to my inner vision of how I see nature. I want to be true to my soul and honest with myself, my feelings and my passion. I want to transmit that onto a blank canvas. That’s it!

Full interview here!!

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