Kristine Kvitka (LV)

Kristine Kvitka (LV)
Text written by GHA

Latvian born artist Kristine Kvitka now lives and works in Tricase, Italy. Using oil on canvas, her mystical yet realistic portraits are accompanied by organically formed spots of colour.

Using oil, Kvitka creates meticulously blended portraits with abstract areas that almost form a curtain.

The thickness of the material ensures that the patches appear as if they are layered over the faces, seamlessly covering the work. Almost like waves engulfing a shore, Kvitka’s portraits are submerged in thermochromic areas of colour.

Red, oranges and yellows contrast with deep blues to create the effect of detecting heat within the painting. 

Kristine Kvitka

Although Kvitka trained in painting restoration, the addition of colour to break up the work acts as a form of anti-restoration. Instead of giving paintings a new life, she ages them, appearing almost damaged on the surface, reminiscent of old photographs. Her realist style is therefore contrasted by these colourful additions, as the faces themselves appear faded and mainly monochromatic, and due to her paint application the underlying portrait appears cracked. These portraits are submissive; instead of trying to break the upper layer of paint, the subjects look like they will eventually be fully covered. 

The paintings aim to comment on the changing of times, moving from black and white to colour. The women all hold a dreamlike optimistic stare looking into the future and the viewer, suggesting a shift. The emotion-filled faces of these women become striking and moving as you are drawn in by their alluring gazes and realism. 

The viewer can easily relate to these anonymous figures, which seem familiar as they fade into the background and are taken over by streams of crystallised colour.


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