Lioba Brückner is an artist in Oberhausen, Germany. Her expressionist, pop surrealist work instills the organic structural integrity of nature into the environments in which her female subjects exist. Lioba’s landscape of vibrant utopic realities feel intimate and with a temperament that allows the flow of color to gently insert oneself into her paintings. When asked about her expressionist influences and her future aspirations, Lioba had this to say:
Your work seems to exhibit a combination of expressionism and pop surrealism. I have seen an intermixing of these two worlds in various contemporary artist’s work within the past few years. What is it about these two art movements that you find visually and intellectually appealing? What I love about expressionism is the illusion of realism gained through rough brush strokes instead of finely worked out details. I’m fascinated by artists who are able to place brushstrokes in a manner that the painting looks realistic from a distance but a chaotic mess at close range. I believe if an artist can paint both in an expressionistic and realistic manner he or she has fully understood what they are doing.
What I find absolutely exciting about pop surrealism is that everything that’s new in the theaters, on the internet, or in science can be transformed immediately into art. It’s free from restrictions: if you like grumpy cat, zombie unicorns, dinosaurs or the newly discovered ape species you can paint all of it and chances are good that there’ll be people who will buy it. With the rise of Instagram both professional and amateur artists can sell their art without being limited to the likes of customers to one or two specific galleries.
When going through your portfolio, I was incredibly impressed with your “flora” work. They are incredibly beautiful and intricate paintings. Were these pieces created for a particular show or were they experimental in design? Thank you so much! My flower paintings were actually not created for any specific purpose or exhibition but solely for myself and my love of flowers and plants. The time in which I created them was when I decided to take care of the neglected little garden in front of my studio. It all began after some birds visited me on the window sill and reminded me of the beautiful little piece of nature just outside. I’m still experimenting with various combinations of flowers, girls, and creatures and I think that I’m probably one of those artists who can’t seem to paint in one specific style but always wanting to discover something new.
Your color palatte and the way you paint your subjects seemed to have taken a turn in much of your newer pieces. Your subjects are still female, but the manners in which you are painting them use a heavier touch of the hand and with more saturated colors. Where are your new influences coming from and what is your thought process about where your work is going? My paintings have developed a lot since the beginning of 2015. After I got used to Instagram, I was mind-blown every single day as I discovered the incredible amount of talented artists around the world. I just didn’t realize that there was such a vast and exciting art scene which I felt was hidden from me. I’m so glad I’ve found a place, although only virtual, where I can be with like-minded people. And finally, I’ve learned that I can paint the things I always wanted to. There will be people who like my pieces and those who don’t and that’s totally fine by me. Whereas In the past I was very insecure about my own style and hesitated to use those bright colors you mentioned.
You asked me what I thought about where my work is going. Of course, I don’t know that for sure but what I discovered with my recent paintings is that my portraits all look very similar, although all photos are taken from different models. I unconsciously seem to develop a unifying face schema whereas in the past my faces were more naturalistic. I really like this development because it differentiates my art even more from my photographic references. Sometimes I think the photos I’ve taken are more beautiful than the paintings themselves. My paintings will never look as perfect as a photo unless one works in a hyperrealist manner and spend a lot of time on one piece. So I’m happy I’ve found a way to distinguish my paintings from my beautiful photography.
Oh and skulls! I love skulls…especially the one cat skull we have at home and a baby skull reproduction (which would be a lot creepier if it was real)…so there will be skulls in my work in future as well!
Lioba has exhibited in various galleries throughout the globe. Her recent contributions have been exhibited at Modern Eden Gallery in San Francisco, California, Alexi Era Gallery in Mascoutah, Illinois and Cotton Candy Machine in Brooklyn, New York. Lioba’s exhibition calendar is quickly filling up her first quarter of the new year. Lioba is presently working on a few group shows for Gristle Art Gallery in Brooklyn, New York and Penumbra Studio in Loures, Portugal. If you would like to view more of LIoba’s work, visit her website or you may email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.