Spanish painter, born in Barcelona, Monica Castanys surprises the viewer through a range of oil paintings, created with a colourful palette, which capture moments of fleeting beauty in the city. The long strolls through the city on a summer day, a beverage shared with a couple of friends at a bar, a bike ride through some crowded streets, all city scenes that are part of the daily life of everyone of us and come across as natural and authentic. These scenes are always perceived through the eyes of a female witness that we are following on this journey of exploration through the city and the human imagination. The artworks stand for a slow tempo of life, captured in expressive, strong colours that bring to mind the ones used by the French impressionists.
By far, one of our favourite artists, Monica shared some of her thoughts and ideas with us, in the following interview, about herself as both a woman and an artist.
Tell us a bit about your beginnings as an artist, how did it all start?
At a very young age I studied at the Barcelona School of Art and Design, Llotja, where I graduated in pictorial procedures and began to collaborate in group exhibitions in galleries. I believe that success consists in being able to do what you are really passionate about in life. From a very young age it was clear to me that I wanted to paint and I always believed enormously in the spiritual part in art.
Of course, I had and still have moments when I question sometimes my art, I believe that any type of creative work must be questioned in order to advance and evolve.
What would you have chosen to be if not an artist? Any advice that you would give to someone willing to venture into arts, but not really knowing where to start from or whether it is worth it?
I think that in some way I would still have to express what I feel through arts and carry out a work with my hands, perhaps sculpture, which I have done too. However, I cannot imagine life without painting. About those that want to become artists, my advice would be to never give up. Dedicating yourself exclusively to painting means giving up many other things. But for whoever really feels the need to do something, it is really worth trying. It is always worth to be ambitious.
Many people describe you as an impressionist figurative painter, focusing on creating impressions about real life experiences. What are you mostly attracted to, in your daily life and in your surroundings?
I am attracted to many everyday moments. I like to observe moments of introspection of figures that I do not know and I try to portray the pleasant company of solitude, those moments in which we feel comfortable ... I really like the female figure, its gestures and the light of sunny days.
What do you think distinguishes your work from other similar artists? What makes your technique so unique?
Perhaps the brushstrokes I use. Technically there is no mystery in the execution, it is oil on wood.
How did your artworks came to life, what was the main motivation behind them?
Motivation always comes from the desire to surprise myself. In all my paintings there is something that has been worked on before but some other things that have not yet been explored. The best part of starting something is not knowing how is it going to end.