When you are influenced by everything around you, whether it is the people in the world, their culture or nature itself–it is emotional and personal. It is these emotions that one tries to express–an inside view of your thoughts, your feelings and your ideas. I sketched, as a child, with my Mother, who was also a painter. When we returned to the Basque Country, Northern Spain, my Father’s birthplace, for the summer vacations, I used to work alongside of her on location.
(Above photo taken by Tala Nicole)
PAUL YGARTUA NDD (1945)
I attended the Liverpool School of art in England, specializing in Gold and Silversmithing. I took life-study but I didn’t take Painting and it wasn’t until I immigrated to Canada that I changed direction and started making a living solely from my art in 1970.
My family and I have always travelled extensively and through out my life I have been influenced by other cultures. My interest, no doubt, comes from my Basque Heritage, the oldest white race of Europe. This influence has also directed me to the varied subject matter I seek out when living in other countries.
In the early 70’s I started painting the North American Native, I found strength and a passion of a race struggling for their identity similar to the Basque People of northern Spain. These influences dominated my work for many years; even today I still feel a need to create with a passion and strength that captivates your mind and soul. I like to stir one’s emotions, I like my patrons to feel this energy that runs through me.
I search for interesting subject matter that has vibrance and movement; then incorporating this emotion into my subject involving the viewer and transporting him to another world. The challenges of different subject matter is always inspiring and fascinating; I enjoy working straight eight to ten hours, intense, with high energy; this becomes a real physical workout on my larger works.
I generally work on four feet x four feet paintings and larger. Murals give you a vast expanse, the largest canvas you can ever hope to get, expanding your perimeters and challenging yourself to the highest limits.
When working freehand with no scale or projector, you must imagine the image, see it in your mind’s eye and envision the painting/mural finished. It is an addiction and I can’t wait to start the next painting.
It is exciting to challenge oneself with each work, always searching within, this opens new doors, new horizons–it never ends.
It is a passion I feel and it is this emotion that I try to portray in all my works.
(Full Biography on Ygartua.com)