Paddies, plantations, harvests of fruits and fish exist alongside large tubular bodies in the paintings of Bali-based Swedish artist Richard Winkler. His palette goes from green to blue to red to mauve. All of his work seems a celebration of earth’s plenitude. The human figures remind the viewer of ancient fertility sculptures like the Venus of Willendorf (28,000–25,000 BC) and the colourful execution of flora and fauna reflects a peaceful exuberance that resembles the Tahitian scenes made by the French post-Impressionist painter Paul Gauguin (1848–1903).
Born in 1969 in the city of Norrköping in eastern Sweden, Richard attended the Beckman’s School of Design in Stockholm, where he studied graphic design, advertising and illustration. He developed both a passion for nature (thanks to his grandparents) and a heightened awareness of human physicality (on account of a rare bone disorder) while still a little child.
After working as an illustrator for a few years after graduation, Richard moved to Indonesia in 1997 and soon became a full-time painter and sculptor. He lives there with his Indonesian wife Regine – his pen pal from secondary school – and their two daughters.
Regarding his content, the artist says: “The world and our life are not always pretty or easy. We work, we struggle, and we become tired and sad sometimes. Life itself can be tough, unfair and ugly in many ways. What I am trying to create is a little window to dream away to a world which does not really exist more than in your mind and in your heart, a dream world of beauty and harmony, of forms and colours. A world where you can let your mind and feelings float away, fantasise and dream and where you can connect to yourself and your feelings. I think in today’s fast-paced world, many people feel they miss that. Stop for a moment, dream away.”
Images used with permission.