Real and Spontaneous

I never followed a role model during the whole of my artistic development. Instead, it was characteristic traits or certain skills that fascinated me about various artists says ace painter Voka in an interview with The Weekend Artist

Voka paintings

What is the philosophy behind the term “spontaneous realism” and could you describe the process that made you arrive at this term?

I define my style as a revival of the significance of contemporary art, a valued tradition in a new era, with a new interpretation reflecting today’s spirit of the time. This distinctive style enables me to strikingly capture immediate reality while the observer is able to feel the embedded movement. The basis of my artistic creations is rooted in a decade-long altercation with the art of realism. I researched the techniques of the old masters and appropriated them into my own intensive self-study. It was my first contact with watercolour that made me realise that working quickly could give my stroke more momentum and therefore enormous dynamic. With the discovery of acrylic, I was able to allow my solid basic knowledge of ‘heavy` art of oil painting and the `light`and rapid technique of watercolour painting to flow together to discover and develop my own style. 

Who do you take inspiration from?

I never followed a role model during the whole of my artistic development. Instead, it was characteristic traits or certain skills that fascinated me about various artists. I count Pablo Picasso as one of the greatest artists of all times. I admire Vincent Van Gogh’s irrepressible strength. Although he failed to receive recognition during his lifetime, he stayed true to his calling and didn’t let anything mislead him. For me his works are still accompanied by great emotion, often brutal and coarse but with a noticeable sensitivity. Another artist who I hold in high regard is Andy Warhol. With his Pop Art, he produced art with a completely different approach. What fascinates me the most is his experimentation with gaudy colours.

Seeing or technique — what according to you is more important for creating a masterpiece? Why?

It is a chicken or egg question. I think they go hand in hand. If you develop and raise techniqueyou are able to implement your ideas in a much better way. And on the other hand, great ideas encourage to groove your technique. It’s all about forcing and boosting oneself and being eager to overstep one´s limits.

Could you elaborate on your current project, something that you are excited about?

Old Masters are responsible for my interest in art and painting. I respect great painters for their enormous technical abilities. In order to study the classic techniques, I have spent months working on one and the same painting. In my current project ‘The masterpiece connection’ I want to pay tribute to the Old Masters. 

What is that biggest compliment that you have received from a personality you have painted the portrait of?

I am glad that people I portray like my paintings. But to be honest, the biggest compliment is not what they tell me directly, but how they act and what they tell to their friends – if they show my work or use it as their profile picture or as a screensaver. That really means they love it and they are proud of it.

What is your take on breaking the rules of any medium?

I would not talk about breaking rules but to unite acquired skills and abilities. To explain it, I compare it to a musician. It takes a long time of practising and training before one is able to play solo. Improvisation is the most challenging part. Improvisation requires maturity and experience. It is the same in fine art. 

Voka paintings and pic 1

(The interview was first published in Nawras Magazine, an international travel and lifestyle magazine in Middleast, Europe and North Africa)

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