It all started when a little girl received a modest blackboard as a gift. She at once sat down on the floor and drew her grandmother’s old sewing machine. To this day, she fondly remembers the applause and the multiple cries of “bravo” from her family and friends. At that moment, she knew what she wanted to do for the rest of her life.
Meet the evocative Macedonian artist, Simonida Filipova Kitanovska.
Simonida was raised in a house full of artists. For as long as she can remember her older brother and parents were painters as well. Through a series of questions, Pakistan in Vogue acquired the details regarding Ms. Kitanovska’s own artistic odyssey.
How would you describe your artistic style?
It is part of the contemporary expressionism style. Some might call it “Simonida style” but I think it’s fifty years too early for that.
What do you think are the most important characteristics of your art?
Since the first day I started painting, I focus on the explosion of color, the drawing gestures, and expressive brush strokes. These three components compel my pieces.
How does your personal history relate to the art you produce?
Haha, history might be too strong of a word, but I am a sensitive person. Therefore everything I experience visually finds it’s way on my canvas. Even the little details I see throughout my day can make the most significant difference in my work.
What and who inspires you in the art world?
I could say my inspiration roots exclusively what I see. Even the nature in my quaint backyard of the birds chirping, the vibrancy of my plants and everything of color and in motion can play an effect on what I paint.
My brain feels the most stimulated when I am traveling to different countries and indulging myself in various cultures. I’ve lived blissfully exploring all of Europe and North Africa. Yet, I don’t believe my work is just an interpretation of that part of the world. Its depiction has traveled far beyond bordered regions. One never knows where inspiration will strike! However, when it happens, that particular place you are in the moment will forever stay with you. Such a place that offered an abundance of galvanizing and encouraging moments was and forever will be the great city of Paris.
What emotions are awakened when you paint? Are they emotions displayed in your art?
If I am truthful, usually the act of creating has nothing to do with emotions. Simply put, feelings come when spectators come. The work of art doesn’t carry any emotions. It is just an object, materialized vision of an artist’s imagination. I don’t have the time nor a need for emotion while I paint. What I do need is the necessary craft and expression to awaken intellectual and emotional reactions in viewers. Their responses are most intriguing and convey their individual personalities. I will say art that evokes the specific emotion of the same intensity is often more vulgar than not.
What makes your process and approach different from that of other artists?
We are all varying individual artists earnestly creating. Thus our creations are bound to bring unique results. Perhaps sometimes we artists come to quite similar expressive solutions, styles, and sensibilities- even if we live in a different space and time.
I have never mimicked others’ art neither confused or compared what I am doing to somebody else is doing. I can visualize the entire picture in my mind, down to the minuscule detail. I can then materialize that image on canvas or paper at lightning speed. I’ve been told that’s a rare quality amongst paints and I guess that could be what sets me apart.
What is your favorite work of art and why?
Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh is one of my favorite works. It’s surreal to see stars so vivid and naturalistic! By far more realistic than anything else I’ve analyzed on a canvas. Instead of me looking at a night sky, it’s more like looking inside oneself. It’s quite mysterious and still exceptionally modern even 130 years after it was painted.
Lastly, what is the main thing you want your art to communicate to viewers?
At the end of the day, if it makes them feel less lonely in this world and brings smiles to their faces, I am happy and content with my job. It means we as united humans understand each other.
Editor : Sara Ashary