Martine Cuyvers

Born in: 1957, Belgium
Lives in: Antwerp, Belgium
Media: Painting
Describe your art in three words: Evocative abstract acrylpaintings
See More Work:  Website | Facebook

Somewhere - Acrylic paint and ink 93 x 63 cm

"Painting is my personal journey of selfdiscovery that is transformed into something tangible. I dive into the collective creative field that is accessible to all of us, while searching for my purest self. In a state of complete freedom and childlike wonder. Questionning purpose and identity."

On the move - Acrylic paint and mixed media 52 x 52 cm
Keep me searching - Acrylic paint and mixed media 92 x 92 cm
A horse with no name - Acrylic paint 92 x 92 cm
What themes does your work involve?
My paintings are a reflection of how I experience life with all its highs and lows. It is an intuitive process in which the message only becomes clear to me when a work is finished. My paintings can be an invitation to contemplation or can provide insight into something hidden in my subconscious or the one the viewer. I wish to evoke a sensation, preferably joy, astonishment, emotion or comfort as a consolation in this disruptive world.
Describe your creative process.
I work without a plan, always in an attempt to reach the flow where time and space no longer exist. My gateway is music. The layers in the music are transformed into colours and when my hand moves on the rythm, I know I’m there. Free from expectations, experimenting, enjoying the process. The intuitive choice of colours determines the atmosphere of the painting, the emotion it evokes, the energy it radiates. Only in this natural flow can I create a pure and authentic work of art.
What influences your work? What inspires you? Why do you make art?
Painting is a necessity of life for me. As a highly sensitive person, I can express impressions for which words are insufficient. At the same time, it is a liberation, a representation of visible and, more importantly, invisible sensations, fears, feelings, desires, memories. All these impressions are my source of inspiration, and the intuitive choice of colours corresponds to the predominance of 1 of the 4 elements (water, air, fire, earth) on my physical and mental state at that moment.
What is good art? What makes a piece of art great?
Art evolves together with society, it can be a reflection of what is or was, but it can also anticipate what may come. Action versus reaction, destruction versus creation, craftsmanship versus experiment. You cannot separate one from the other., the timing may differ. I perceive a piece of art great when it transcends the ordinary and at the same time deeply moves me. When it settles in my memory and my cells. It can be literature, movies, choreographies, fine arts, theatre, music etc.
What is the role of the artist today?
What the world needs now is love ... and creativity. A more creative society has a potential to be more peacefull and problemsolving. In that sense, shouldn't we all be artists? The artist can be a role model for authenticity, courage and persistance. In a world dominated by perfectly impossible to achieve social media fake role models, it is time to get our feet on the ground and live as close as possible to our genuine soul paths. That's what a true artist does.


This interview was published by Circle Foundation of the Arts. © CFA Press ∙ Images are courtesy of the artist

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Thomas Vancoppenolle

Born in: 1994, Belgium
Lives in: Ghent, Belgium
Media: Photography, Film/analog photography, Installation, Printmaking, Video, Crafts
Describe your art in three words: Nostalgia, melancholy, solitude
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Meditation On A Landscape - Still from video installation, 1x1m

"Is it possible to become friends with a butterfly? Suppress your presence as a human being, stay very still, and convince yourself that you are a tree or grass or a flower. It takes time, but once the butterfly lets its guard down, you can become friends quite naturally."
- 1Q84, Haruki Murakami

Papillon: A Sense of Place - Still from video installation (I of II), 4 x 5 m
Papillon: A Sense of Place - Transparent plexiglass sculpture 60 x 40 cm
Maze - Paper poster A2
What themes does your work involve?
My work often explores the notion of a place, and the way in which we perceive and experience the different aspects of a landscape on a personal level. In what ways are we affected by the mental and sensorial qualities of a ‘landscape’ in its various forms, and how much of our own subconscious or memories do we project onto the places or phenomena that we encounter throughout our lives? Is it possible to perceive a work with singular meaning while every person carries his or her own background?
Describe your creative process.
Through the collection of fragmented images of places or landscapes, poetry, sound or photosculptural work, I process and mould questions of place and belonging into visual or auditive works. Can a work breathe or have a personal connection to us, translated mainly through form or, sound or text? Bringing a sense of life or energy into an otherwise static experience, I invite viewers into a dialogue with these mental spaces to project and reflect themselves on what is in front of them.
What influences your work? What inspires you? Why do you make art?
I feel the biggest influence for me has always mainly come from the East. When I was introduced to the work of Japanese photographer Daido Moriyama at the age of 18, something inside of me was awakened by the expressive energy in his work. A completely new world opened up to me from then on, maybe for the first time. In addition to this, I've always been strongly fascinated by subjects as Taoism, Shintoism, or other philosophies and beliefs that speak on any kind of animism in nature or life.
What is good art? What makes a piece of art great?
For me, explanations and words always come second, so I think the greatest power of art lies in speaking through its various forms first and foremost, before anything has been said or read about it. At a time when streams of information approach us from all sides, I value it immensely when I feel my emotions being touched by something without having someone come up to me to explain what this specific work is supposed to be about, or should be. That way, form can always prevail over language.
What is the role of the artist today?
I have little judgment about what role art, or the artist should take on in this society, but I do know that I want to give myself fully to this quest that carries beauty and slowing down in mind, at all times. Regardless of any socio-actual context from which art could speak, I'll express whatever I can in form or sound, and invite people to stand still amidst the flow that keeps pulling us from place to place. I chose art for the sake of feeling connected with the other and the self.


This interview was published by Circle Foundation of the Arts. © CFA Press ∙ Images are courtesy of the artist

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Jiqun Chen

Born in: 1947, China
Lives in: China
Media: Painting, Drawing
Describe your art in three words: Ujumchin Herdsman, Echoing Steppe
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"I am an oil painter who depicts the conservation of Steppe ecology of China."

Chinese artist Jiqun Chen was born in 1947. He attended the Affiliated Middle School of the Central Academy of Fine Arts from 1963 to 1967. Following that, he ventured to Mandu Baolige, East Ujumchin Banner, Inner Mongolia, before returning to Beijing in 1980. During the 1980s, he established himself as a professional painter. In the 1990s, he divided his time between sketching in pastoral areas and showcasing his work in exhibitions abroad. In the year 2000, he published his website


This interview was published by Circle Foundation of the Arts. © CFA Press ∙ Images are courtesy of the artist

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La Reine

Born in: The Netherlands
Lives in: Macharen, The Netherlands
Media: Painting, Sculpture, Poetry
Describe your art in three words: Positive, colorful emotional
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Floating - Noir de Mazy stone

"For 20 years, I worked in a high school, teaching students painting and sculpture. Now, I work in my studio and teach both men and women the techniques of making sculptures."

Little tower in Liempde - Pen drawing
Kingfisher - Bronze sculpture
People moving and dancing - Acrylic on canvas
What themes does your work involve?
My three-dimensional work usually focuses on people. People fascinate me in all their movements and body language, and this fascination is reflected in my work in stone or bronze. Rooted in realism, I engage in a battle with the stone or wax material. While working with the material, I can convey the associations that come to mind, utilizing the feelings, impressions, and relationships that develop with the stone.
Describe your creative process.
With my images, I look at the stone and see which figure is already within it. Then, I just have to remove the excess material, sand, and polish the work nicely. The movement of people is paramount in my paintings. I can let go of the constraints of reality and paint from my heart; the inspiration flows out and is reflected in the painting.
What influences your work? What inspires you? Why do you make art?
The colors and my feelings serve as my inspiration for my three-dimensional work, with Rodin being a major influence. I create art because the inner urge to create is so strong within me that I must act on it. A day without working on my art is a day wasted.
What is good art? What makes a piece of art great?
Good art is art that touches you and evokes emotion.
What is the role of the artist today?
I have chosen art because I can put my feelings into my artwork. Art must be in society, and one can never start early enough to bring art into their life. It can be as essential as eating and drinking.


This interview was published by Circle Foundation of the Arts. © CFA Press ∙ Images are courtesy of the artist

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Jean-Pierre Alban

“I am inspired by color and light. In my work right now I am focusing on great masters and create compositions that deal with the concept of balance. I work with digital media and have a background in Painting. I recently exhibited in Paris and l accept commissions.”

After Mattisse Series: Untitled Color Study 3

Jean-Pierre Alban was born in 1982 in Nantes, France. After studying Fine Art and earning a degree in Painting he worked for over a decade as an illustrator and graphic artist. Since 2019, Jean-Pierre has focused more and more on his personal practice, producing digital art. The recipient of multiple awards he has exhibited in France, Italy and New York. The artist is available for commissions and is seeking gallery representation.

After Kelly Series: Untitled Color Study 6
After Kelly Series: Untitled Color Study 80
After Kelly Series: Untitled Color Study 61
After Kelly Series: Untitled Color Study 73

This review was published by Circle Foundation for the Arts © CFA Press ∙ Images are courtesy of the artist


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