Artist of the Week – Pere Llobera

Posted on March 12, 2013 · Posted in Artist of the Week

Drumback – 2008. Oil on canvas – 38 x 46 cm

Spanish artist Pere Llobera is a painter who has a traditional Fine Art painting background. Llobera paints somewhat simple and mundane scenes that make us, the viewers, feel that we are spying on the private lives of ordinary and normal people. This is contrasted with his gestural, energetic and large brush marks that narrate the story, or a snap shot of a moment in time.

Llobera’s paintings are out of focus blurry images, that have a sense of melancholy. Each composition feels slightly neglected and almost ‘unfinished’. The colours and tones that he uses are remininscent of Goya’s work, Llobera’s Spanish predecessor.

Llober’s paintings leave us wanting to know more about the people and scene that he’s composed.

In His Own Words.

The ruins of my school. 2007 – Oil on wood – 97 x 130 cm

Please tell us more about your art and design background and when did you first realize you are an artist?
Drawing and painting always have been with me. My father is a draughtsman himself and for me it was automatic to take that direction.

Another question is when I realized the possibility of becoming an artist. At the beginning I was wrong. I thought that being a really talented painter was enough. But I discovered my mistake. This moment was the really important one. I was around 25 years old. Quite late. What is really important to an artist is the way you look the world.

Untitled. 2010 – Oil on canvas – 46 x 33 cm

I doubted a lot about myself at the beginning because my father was an illustrator. I thought to myself, is it because of my father that I draw. But now I know for sure I have a true energy for my art.

Your paintings have a real narrative sense. How do your paintings relate to each other or do you feel that they are single snap shots of different accounts?
Probably my paintings are single snap shots of different accounts. But they have an invisible wire between all of them. All of them belong to my way of thinking.

San Francisco talking to the machines. 2011 – Oil on canvas – 130 x 170 cm

When creating your art, do you switch between a variety of disciplines such as, drawing, painting and photography. Or do you stick to one medium, discipline or dimension?
Oil is my favourite discipline but I use lots of techniques to give to me freedom that I need. I think the most important thing is to adapt the technique to the idea. But yes, oil is the most handy way for me to paint, you can modify the colors, etc…. and the finishing of the layers is really nice.

Teenagers. 2008 – Oil on canvas – 40 x 60 cm

You are Spanish, now you living in Amsterdam. Do you think that this effects your work? Does the Dutch perspective differ from the Spanish in regards to the Art world?
I am a really bizarre Spanish artist, because I paint as a German. Or not. Maybe all of Spain is wrong and I am a truly Spanish artist that makes a continuous tribute to Ribera, Goya, Zurbarán…. All those painters of the past were really dark, and melancholic painters. But now is difficult to find sn artist like Tenebrismo in my country. I have a very strong dark side, at least in Art, and I have travelled to the Netherlands with this dark side incorporated.

I don’t care so much where I am painting. Everything is filtered by my biographical experience. This is more powerful to me than the country where I work, but I try to learn from everywhere I live. In the Netherlands I have discovered the artist Bas Jan Ader, and in other places I find other interesting and inspirational artists, of course.

Netherlands accepts sad works. In Spain this is more difficult

Feeling like Gilles. 2008- Oil on canvas – 40 x 60 cm

In your opinion what are the fundamental disciplines or media that you find integral to the work of an artist and why?
For me what is fundamental for an artist is to be a reader or a writer, or both. The fact of reading for example, creates the difference between looking at the world in two dimensions or in three.

When you are able to understand several layers of reality you can work as a painter, film-maker, etc… and your work improves. The technique is the tool, but the intellect is the brain.

I used to be jealous about the really strong and punk painters, those artists that create really wild and free paintings. But I realize that jealousy was a jealousy about the surface of this art, it should be about the attitude. I can still be jealous of this kind of wild artist, but I have understood that I am not this kind of artist. I belong to another kind, and at the end what I NEED is a sophisticated concept.

I appreciate wildness in others. There is the wildness of The Ramones, but I prefer Neil Young and Crazy Horse.

I don’t know if that example makes it clear enough.

How does a painting evolve for you? How much is your conscious mind affected by your subconscious, do you think?
The transit between the conscious and subconscious in my work is different in every painting. Sometimes my paintings come from a very structured idea from the beginning, or sometimes they are very open. Ideas fluctuate in my paintings all the time. It depends.

Untitled. 2010 – Oil on canvas – 54 x 65 cm

Where do you hope to take your work and ideas in the next few years?
I would like to paint for me. Only for me. Every day that passes I become more tired of the facility that many artists have to become influenced by other artists. Sometimes I dream in the ideal for me and my Art. Those future places I would like to be closer to in order to succeed.

I am doing paintings right now where I can imagine myself living inside the canvas. I am serious. I am trying to get the impossible from my paintings, where I will feel save of the ‘white noise’. It’s really difficult. Probably it will be a failed series or work- or maybe not, if I’m lucky!

Pere Llobera was born in Barcelona, Spain, 1970, who now lives and works in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. In 1993Llobera graduated with a degree in Fine Arts from Sant Jordi Faculty Barcelona, Spain. In 1998 he was nominated in the XXVI Certamen Nacional de Pintura Caja de Madrid

All images courtesy of Pere Llobera  |
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