Toronto artist Nicole Daniah Sidonie focuses on the human form in her paintings, feeling empathy and familiarity with her subjects. View more of her expressive art by visiting her website.
The virtue of a painting lies in its ability to hold a viewer captive, to beckon another look at what is dimly perceived, yet strongly felt. The magic, however, lies in the eyes of the viewer who chooses to linger and venture far enough into his own mind to understand the pull and to ask why.
I am a painter whose inspirations have taken root in the human figure as a most germane vehicle for exploring and expressing the labyrinth of thoughts and feelings often eclipsed and fragmented by the demands of daily life.
My tools are oils and acrylics, palette knives and brushes, the indispensable paper towel and the complexity of rich emotions and empty spaces that guide me as I navigate this fascinating and often challenging journey through life and art.
Training in the realist tradition has provided a good foundation for painting, however it has become imperative to me to stay true to and work through feeling rather than academic reasoning or logic. I am after something authentic and raw and allowing each painting to emerge in its own way, towards its own final destination. That is fundamental to my objectives.
As a result, there is both a deliberateness and a spontaneity to how I work. Knowing when to lead the brush and when to follow prevents stagnation in creativity and imparts a sense of adventure onto each blank canvas.
Sometimes the emotional energy of a piece presents itself early in the making as in my study for “Forget Me Not.”
Other times, a work calls for more refinement, as can be seen in my study for “Sir Chester of Lorient.” My ultimate goal is to distill, to be laconic and afford the viewer room to inhabit the painting and find their own meaning.
After several years of painting, I have come to the realization that to attempt to paint for the masses goes against the very intrinsic nature of art and what it has to offer both artist and audience. I have also come to the realization that art succeeds on the basis of reciprocity and no amount of technical mastery or anatomical correctness alone can give a painting its soul.
A work of art speaks to those who are meant for it, for art is largely personal —a touchstone to our private truths, life experiences, perceptions, struggles and glories, passions and fears. And when we see our own reflection, however loosely, in the inner world of another human being, we are reminded that we are not alone.
Art has the potential to lift us out of the fray and in those moments we have the opportunity to gain valuable insight into our inner workings and may even find ourselves in an environment of empathy. It is this meeting between painting and beholder that fuels my desire to paint and gives me the greatest sense of satisfaction in knowing a connection has been made.
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