Art & Culture

Louise Dear

Originally published in SIX magazine issue 1 – INSTINCT


Written by Aindrea Emelife

Free-spirited, vivid and exciting. It’s almost impossible to condense the creative chaos present in Louise Dear’s work into just three words.

An artist with a simple ambition ‘to create beautiful paintings’, Louise Dear’s passion for colour shines through her large, contemporary, figurative works. Indeed, the captivating energy infused in her paintings seems to be mirrored in the artist herself and her vivacious personality.

Gazing at works by this artist is a vivid affair, with a vibrant and shocking explosion of colour striking from the get-go. Paints, inks, dyes, glitters and glosses are typically thrown, rubbed, poured and dripped over an aluminium surface, which is then sanded and stripped back.

Looking through Dear’s body of work my senses are invaded and stimulated, blending into one as I taste the candy colours and hear the paint strokes drag along the aluminium. 

Dear cites her main influences as Utamaro – the floating world artists – and their influence on the Art Deco period of the early 20th century. She has journeyed across the world, with her travels to South Africa and the Far East serving as a great source of inspiration for her work. Dear seemingly has absorbed the essence of the local cultures and applied it to her canvas with hints of kawaii and a kitsch flair. 

Alongside Dear’s intense use of colour is a keen sensuality, celebrating the beauty of the female form in a highly romanticised – and eroticised – way, stemming from the appreciation of innocence, or lack thereof. Her nymph-like creatures are entwined with bright flowers, with underlying patterns hinting at the transparency of the paint.

Dear is a painter who, put simply, loves painting, and her passion for her craft bleeds into every paint stroke. She’s not afraid of colour, but she doesn’t take things too seriously either. Her work leaves me with a sense of optimism, and appreciation of forgotten beauty, which she exposes so literally. A shining beacon of bright, bubbly creativity – Louise, dear, you are fun!

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