I am a self-taught artist with Transylvanian roots living in Ottawa since the late 1980s. Immigrating to Canada at a time when hi-tech was booming drove me to pursue a degree in electrical engineering. A career in Information Technology with the City of Ottawa left me with little room for artistic endeavours.
My eye-opening moment was when I turned 50 and I realized that life was too short to let my dreams go to waste. So, I picked up a pencil and started drawing. I began exhibiting my figurative pencil drawings a year later and has won since several awards in local and international art exhibitions.
Having started out late in life, I was interested to try out different media: graphite, charcoal, coloured and pastel pencils, acrylic, oil, resin, often mixing several of them together for an enhanced visual effect. I experimented with styles from realistic to abstract, and even 3D collage. But in the end, I always seem to return to what really started me on this path: realistic pencil portraiture and figurative art. Although working with a brush or a palette knife have their own merit, there is no better feeling for me than the control I have over a pencil guided by my steady hand.
As an active member of several art organizations in the Ottawa area, I exhibit throughout the year in selected community and commercial galleries, most notably at the Foyer Gallery in Ottawa. Since my retirement from the City in early 2022, I have been a full-time artist and able to finally be what I feel I was truly meant to be.
We can only see what our perception allows us to see. Distracted by meaningless details, we are often missing the whole picture. My philosophy is that we humans have at least two conflicting sides: a conformist, needing-to-fit-in side that we show to the world (depicted as monochrome in my art), and a hidden, rebellious, more colourful side we ourselves often ignore, but evident to those who know us deep down. These sides intertwine and merge into our personality without a tangible boundary. This is what defines us as unique and complex human beings.
What inspires my art is the beauty of my perceived reality. I can see so much beauty in the intricacies of the human figure, in the emotional power of a gesture, in the smile of a ragged old face, in the innocent expression of a child, in the seductive glance of a person, if I don’t just look with my eyes, but also with my heart. Capturing and sharing the essence of this beauty through my artworks has become my life’s passion and gives me tremendous joy and complete emotional fulfilment.