Hometown: Aachen, Germany
Based in: London
My background as an artist is somewhat unusual. I graduated from King's College London with a BA German and followed this with MSt in European Literature at St Cross College, University of Oxford, in 1992. My first love has always been the written word. Over the years I developed a strong interest in the world of therapy having studied psychoanalytic readings of texts as part of my MSt. I started studying for a Counselling degree and completed an MA Integrative Counselling in 2009 followed by further courses in the field of psychotherapy and counselling. Both literature and psychotherapy continue to inform my work as an artist. While I never formally studied art I had been exploring different forms of expression - beyond language - for several years. The world of therapy opened up an exploration of the unconcious processes that painting helped me to access. The other, most obvious, connection between the profession of therapist and artist is the preoccupation with emotions. In my therapeutic work I talk about emotions; in my art I aim to translate emotions into visual markers on canvas.
Much of my earlier and more recent work is influenced by my psychotherapy training; the pieces were concerned with memories and dreams peeling away at them layer by layer. The other, constant focus of inspiration for me is the natural world which I return to at regular intervals in my work. More recently I started to be more pre-occupied with the internal world again. As a child I was fascinated by maps, copying the contours of continents and colouring in the different countries. In my latest work I am returning to this childhood love by painting imaginary maps of external and internal worlds, taking us to places that are "not down on any map; true places never are.” (Herman Melville, Moby Dick)
Each of my pieces is unique and takes time develop. I aim to lend as much ‘feel’ to my paintings as possible, ‘controlling’ the painting as much as possible while also allowing for more spontaneity and risk by applying paint in a variety of ways: smudging, scraping, flicking, squeezing and rubbing paint onto the canvas, scratching paint off and re-starting the process.
My work has been sold to art collectors internationally with many returning customers.
Angela Dierks In The Studio
Talk about painting: there's no point. By conveying a thing through the medium of language, you change it. You construct qualities that can be said, and you leave out the ones that can't be said but are always the most important. (Gerhard Richter)
More About Angela Dierks
What inspires you?
I get inspired by the natural world around me with a particular love for flowers, by my reading (poetry in particular) and by the work that I do as a therapist. I frequently return to painting abstract florals, being drawn in by the drama and vibrancy of flowers.
Describe your creative process.
I usually simply start and see where the painting takes me. I am always guided by my intuition. Sometimes an idea can emerge \relatively quickly, other times it's a long drawn out process. I often get an idea for a painting while lying in bed- frequently I dream of the work and this influences ideas. Once the idea for a composition emerges I slowly start to build up the painting layer by layer fine tuning the work. I need to let the work be for a while before I return to it for more detail. I am iu
What are 3 words that best describe your work?
Expressive, colourful, intuitive
Who are some artists that have influenced your work?
Gerhard Richter, Joan Mitchell, Cy Twomly, Cesar Manrique, Fiona Rae are just some of the influences. There are, of course, many more. I am particularly keen on the Abstract Expressionists.
What is the most important tool when creating your work?
Bowl for mixing pigments or marble dust with mediums, brush, paper, palette knife and brayer
What is the best piece of advice you have been given?
Just do it.
Where do you go for inspiration?
Outside, into the natural world with all its beauty and inside by listening to my feelings.
Collections Featuring Angela Dierks