When talent and human being meet each other, something wonderful may happen. In the artistic world, young artists encounter many obstacles when it comes to emerge and impose their own artistic style. However, their personality can act as a counterweight. Let’s discover Petr Gruber, a young talent born and grew up in Czech Republic. He was born in 1989 in Havlíčkův Brod, a small town of about 24,000 inhabitants. He initially studied Graphic Arts, before being admitted to the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague. During his studies, he spent a short period in Munich, Germany, thanks to a university exchange program. In 2014, he graduated and begun his career.
How and when did you discover your potential for painting?
I understood it from childhood. I had great teacher during the years of school, he always guided me to focus on painting. He also supported me a lot, he believed in me. After the third year of school, I started painting with a certain continuity.
Could you describe your style?
My style is very colorful. I work with a reduction of shapes into abstract. I focus on relationships between colours and shapes reduction, in terms of rhythm between them. Such expression occurs through real materialistic elements, which are often integrated by organic forms. My paintings show a combination of two elements: concrete and abstract. The surface of my paintings is always obtained with a systematic layer of colors. I can obtain their semi-transparency, thanks to my experience with water colours. The technique with water colors is something that I use simultaneously with oil painting. The intensity of my colour palette is reduced and the composition itself is pervaded by a certain harmony between warm and cold tonalities. I make an irrational use of it, with the sole aim of recreating a specific and concrete atmosphere.
What is your main source of inspiration?
I work with my memories, which are often related to childhood. I was always surrounded by nature. For example, the woods I usually paint, is connected to particular moments impressed in my memory. The forest itself is a source of inspiration, in particular its ability to offer a perception of transformation.
How do you develop your creative process?
I like working in daylight. Usually, I work on different canvases simultaneously. I put aside the canvas that I have not completed yet and I only come back on it when I feel I am again in the right mood. When I feel a strong connection with the canvas, again. I listen to music with the purpose of creating the right atmosphere, but I prefer silence when I start to paint, so that I can “listen” to the image. When I understand that I have penetrated its space and extracted what I feel, I am pervaded by a sense of joy. I sit down and do not leave the study.
How did your style develop over the years?
It has changed a lot over the years. I think I managed to calm my soul, recently. The process of creation has become more gradual. At the same time, my memories of childhood and the spirit of nature remain very important for the present, but also for the future.
In your opinion, what is the key element for creating an excellent composition?
There is no key element. Each artist must work only in the way he considers to be true. He has to draw what exalts, relaxes and stimulates his personality. I believe that when a painter has a sharp and sensitive perception of all the things, he can certainly create a good composition.
What are your future plans?
Currently, I am working on an exhibition that will take place in a gallery in Prague. Around April, I will leave to the artistic residence in Germany, in Schwandorf for a month. In the next future, I would like to live in a rural location, in a place surrounded by mountains and forests. This would allow me to find myself in the places I often visit in my paintings.
The works of Petr Gruber, are on sale online at:
Petr Gruber, Hotel in woods, oil on canvas, 180 x 270 cm, 2017
Petr Gruber, Evening lights, acrylic and oil on canvas, 90 x 75 cm, 2018
Petr Gruber, Spruce curtain, oil on canvas, 180 x 130 cm, 2017