Claudia Olivos presents her portfolio of dreamlike paintings. Enjoy, and be sure to visit her website for more about this talented artist.
I am a painter from Chile via Washington D.C., where I was born to Chilean parents. I was raised in Chile but spent vacations in Mexico and New York City where my father lived as a UN diplomat and a painter.
When I was 12, my mother remarried and we returned to the Washington DC area where I currently reside with my fellow artist and life partner, the Mexican painter Sergio Olivos and our son Julian, an aspiring writer.
I see my work as an exploration of the relationship between physical reality and imagination, or what I call ‘soulstate’: the essence within each individual and the possibilities beyond what the eye can see and what our minds can understand.
It is this, the experience of being that interests me, that which is unseen/the subconscious; the subtle contrasts of our lives experiences as we live day to day immersed in a world that without wonderment can become desolate and gray. I choose lines and color and visual storytelling to tap into the labyrinth of the mind, the genesis of the eternal.
The images come intuitively as I work, they discover me as much as I dis-cover them; as such, I have always related to the Surrealist’s automatism, what is now being called “intuitive painting”.
I don’t plan my paintings in preliminary sketches, I just begin to paint and allow for whatever needs to happen to flow through. It is a long process as sometimes I end up with a totally different image than what I started with, it is a total collaboration between myself the painter and myself connected to “All that Is” as the work itself manifests before my eyes even as I work.
I had always worked primarily with oils, but after the market crash of 2007, I not only lost the four galleries that represented me, I also experienced a huge downturn in sales which led me to experiment with smaller sizes and other media. Later, I was diagnosed with heavy metal toxicity due to working with dry oil pigments, and I was forced to stop working with oils all together for a period of one year.
I immersed myself into acrylics and mixed media, and although I enjoyed it for a couple of years, the work I produced with acrylics does not *feel* the same for me as my oil pieces. There is an *ease* for me when I work with oils, a medium that I feel “chose me”… as I began to paint with it when I found some tubes inside of one of my father’s cigar boxes after he passed away when I was in my late teens. I didn’t even know how to use it and mixed it with olive oil in the beginning!
My current work has led me to combine my love of painting the figure with my passion for abstract expressionism and color.
In the fusion of figuration and abstraction I have found the tools that allow me to create a magical realist realm filled with personal symbols; these symbols interact one with another creating a fantastic yet tangible world that represents all that surrounds me, how I see and experience the world in the midst of hardships and life challenges.
I made my first drawing before I could walk… Art is my passion, it is who I am. To draw and paint is as much part of my existence as eating or breathing, it always has been. ~Claudia Olivos