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Mats Eriksson

Artist's Interview

How long have you been creating?
I have been painting on and off, using various media, since I was a teenager. However, it is only for the last three years that I have been painting every day. Earlier I worked as a scientist in theoretical chemistry. About three years I started to work part time. The rest is devoted to art, painting and writing. Most of the paintings included in this portfolio are created during these last three years. Working half time is rather optimal for me, since I would find it quite isolated to paint full time and I appreciate the social contacts at work.
What is your medium of choice?
I solely use acrylics paint nowadays. I used to work with oil paint, but since I am painting and living in the same apartment, acrylics works better for me. I am a rather impatient artist and the short drying time of acrylics is an important element in the creation.
What are your motivations for creating?
Painting has become one of the most important ingredient in my life. The driving force for my painting is primarily that it has a very calming effect on my rather restless personality. It also keeps me from thinking too much and instead focus on something constructive. I like to create colorful paintings and to experiment with different techniques, such as knife- and finger paintings. Presently, I prefer using a brush though.
What other artists and movements inform your work?
I am primarily inspired by the old masters, such as the big impressionists and I admire the vibrant paintings that they were able to create. I am also a big admirer of Rembrandt; the light he creates is fantastic. My mother is also a source of inspiration, since she paints wonderful landscapes, using water colors.
What do you find stimulating right now? How does this influence your creative process?
Lately, I have been working with some pointilistic paintings, where I use only dots or points of paint. It very interesting to play with the color and light effects that arises from the applied points of paint. I find painting nudes, portraits and landscapes suitable for the pointilistic approach. I have also enjoyed painting very small paintings (around 8" x 8") lately. For some reason I find it easier to include more details in a small painting.
Read anything good lately?
I am very interested in natural science and recently read an interesting book about the new physics and parallel worlds.
What are some of your artistic goals for the future?
I would like to improve and develop the pointilistic approach, preferably on landscape motifs. Moreover, I would like to continue with small paintings and improve my sense for details, that is useful in portrait painting, where accuracy is very important. So far, I have one exhibition planned in a couple of weeks, and I may have another in the end of the year or early next year.
What would you like your fellow EBSQ artists and collectors to know about you and or your work?
I am essentially self taught as painter and my only education is a couple of evening courses that I attended some years ago. I like to experiment with light and colors in my paintings. My favourite motifs are nude males and females, but I am leaning more and more towards portrait and landscape paintings.

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