Monday, March 19, 2012

Style, Theme and Technique in Art Licensing - Artist Matteo Grilli

First of all I want to thank all of the artists who have been sharing their wonderful stories and art on my blog, as well as all my followers. It has been a fun journey so far, and per the many emails I receive, the articles have been a source of inspiration to many. So this is great!

Starting in April I will also publish a series of new editorials, including blog hops and short articles featuring artists and their fun, inspirational and trendy work. I will also continue to publish one or possibly two interviews per month. This will give me more time to work on my own art in preparation for my debut at Surtex this year - here is my promotional postcard for the occasion!

But meanwhile this week I want to introduce to the licensing community the lovely work of another Italian artist, Matteo Grilli. He was born in Italy and showed a deep fascination for animals and art from an early age. Matteo says, "I didn't follow any art school, college or art course so I am completely self taught. I started working as a featured artist at the Russell Gallery in Ireland in 2009. That trip to Ireland was my springboard to start my own art career." Life events eventually brought him to Brisbane, Australia, where he is currently based and is finding his way as an emerging artist.

Artist Matteo Grilli
"My ultimate goal," Matteo says "is to draw attention to the beauty of nature, to its fleeting essence, to inspire its contemplation, discovery and enjoyment, and therefore its understanding and care. Birds are my favorite subjects but any aspect of the natural world attracts my attention. I pursue precision, detail and realism derived from what I see. I belive that less is more and that what is left out of a work of art is as important as what is included, so I tend to leave space for the viewer, not paying much attention to the surroundings, focusing on the very subject of a painting." 


He also adds that this may lead his artwork to look rather unfinished, sketchy or more like studies. "My watercolour technique is rather traditional, mostly wet on dry and wet on wet as well." The tools Matteo uses are traditional too, high quality watercolour paints, paper and brushes, a pencil and sometimes an ink pen. 

"I see things with the same curiosity and excitement I had as a child. What I think is exciting about my creative work is to be able to share an experience derived from a contact with an animal in its natural environment. After witnessing the beauty and truth of nature I feel an urgency to portray it and a responsibilty to share it. I want to give the viewer one more chance to enjoy the overlooked beauty of the small things, of all the amazing creatures we, more or less unwittingly, share our lives with. I see all of this as very exciting."


His primary source of inspiration comes from the amazingly rich and varied wildlife living in suburban Brisbane. After nature itself, he been inspired by many other things, from the nature books of Marjolein Bastin - "after which I decided to focus on watercolor," Matteo says - to Louis Agassiz Fuertes and John Busby, to cave art, Chinese and Japanese artwork, and his childhood's cartoons like 'The Animals of Farthing Wood' and 'Watership Down.' "I also like the artwork of the many British watercolour artists of the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries, natural history art, botanical art and early topographical tradition. Looking at all these things over the years still today puts me in the right state of mind to create."

At the moment Matteo just started a new series of artworks called Avian Faces, which focuses on exploring the different fleeting face expressions of birds. He says, "I'm also getting ready to start my art business in Australia which is very exciting and I'm looking forward to it."

Matteo concludes saying, "I do not have any experience in art licensing but it is a path I am certainly very interested to follow and it is on my list of things to achieve. A future aspiration is to be able to allow people to contemplate and meditate upon nature's beauty through my work. Also, I want my artwork to be seen as a good means of inspiring nature's protection, consideration and enjoyment. And last but not least, of course, I hope to be able to support my projects with my art business."


           Matteo's blog: matteogrilli.blogspot.com


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