"With my paintings, I try to capture the beauty of nature around me and the feelings she gives me. When I come back from a walk or from a journey (when this was possible) or from my place of birth I paint what's left behind and inside me. Painting and writing about my feelings keep me 'hungry'."
Santina Chirulli is an Italian artist, born in 1967 and has lived in Ghent, Belgium since 1998.
"The first thing I did, when I moved, besides learning Dutch, was attending the Sint-Lucas Academy for a painting course for adults, two afternoons a week for 6 years. I finally could express myself, (without words), and give form to my thoughts and feelings with a solid structure and full immersion in what I always wanted to do: dedicate my time to Art. After Sint Lucas I attended many other art classes with private artists or Art organizations."
In recent years, Santina Chirulli uses acrylic paint because it dries as fast as that her thoughts and feelings. "But if I am not satisfied with the result during painting, I will continue painting, colour over colour, or put the canvas aside for a moment with the idea of working on it later. Often canvases or canvas paper, go months, sometimes years on the side, to discover later that this kind of “unfinished” works were actually finished.
Trees with roots and branches are my favourite though. They remind me that my daily life, far from my roots now, can continue season after season also when I feel "uprooted" like a tree in the wind. When I travel I always take something to draw, to write or paint with me. Also at home, I keep a sketchbook like a notebook. A kind of diary where I write and draw with pen, colours or pencil. I put my ideas down and whatever comes to my mind in order to use it later for my paintings, or I just keep it as a record in order to empty my mind and make space for what comes next. I started to exhibit my works for a large public very early while I was taking classes and after of course and still doing it. See my website for a list of the exhibition I took part in the last 15 years."
This review was published by Circle Foundation for the Arts © CFA Press ∙ Images are courtesy of the artist