Liselotte Watkins finds inspiration for her painting in her daily life in Rome, where she moved with her family some years ago.
Watkins has spent a long time illustrating and painting women. During the pandemic year, in locked-down Italy, she observed how women spend time in and close to their homes. Based on close readings of herself and other women, she creates images that are interpretations of moods and emotional states. What do these women dream of, what do they do and what do they think about?
Filled with humorous and playful details and furniture, the motifs referring to art history, older still lifes and intimate depictions of space. The pictorial surface is dominated by geometric shapes with the sporadic appearance of a human presence.
Other series comprise painted amphoras and other ceramic objects, found at markets and flea markets. These are also portraits of women, several of which were exhibited at Villa San Michele in 2019. Watkins also works with textiles.
Born in Nyköping in 1971, as a high school student, Liselotte Watkins Falk moved to Texas, where a distant relative lived. Through recommendations, she began studying at the Dallas Art Institute where she focused on advertising and illustration. After a period in Stockholm, she relocated to New York at the end of the 1990s and this is when her career took off. Receiving much attention for her fashion illustrations, Watkins’ clients included Miu Miu, Prada, Vogue and Elle. She has also illustrated several books, including her own fashion illustrations in Watkins’ Heroine.
After sojourns in Milan and Paris, Watkins moved to Rome where she stopped accepting commissions and began to focus entirely on her artistic practice. She has been active as an artist in Italy for a decade and for the past five years she has devoted herself exclusively to painting.
When asked if any specific artist or art historical period has inspired her, she answers: “Here in Rome and Florence, it is difficult to avoid the Renaissance and Bernini and Michelangelo, all of whom one has to relate to. I have also been very inspired by Cy Twombly (1928-2011) who lived here for many years. In Milan, it was Carla Accardi (1924-2014) and Nathalie du Pasquier (b. 1957). In Paris, I became obsessed with Picasso. New York gave me Andy Warhol and Stockholm Sigrid Hjertén.”
The exhibition in the Artist’s Home and the Small Studio features some 20 paintings and 10 sculptures from 2018-2020. Several works have never previously been exhibited.
The exhibition is a collaboration with Villa San Michele and CF Hill Gallery.Read more