Palette knife portraits form complex imagery using simple gestures

Palette knife portraits form complex imagery using simple gestures

French painter, Françoise Nielly, has a talent for making deft gestural marks with a palette knife. The resulting images are bold combinations of shape and color. By pairing color compliments, the sharp contrast of color wheel opposites add to the vivid excitement of the work.

The images do not dissolve into abstraction as is often the case in palette knife paintings. Instead, the detail given to facial features such as the eyes, nose and lips helps to anchor the image and provide focus for the viewer.

Nielly grew up in the South of France and was inspired by the landscape’s light and color. She was also influenced by her father’s profession as an architect, from which she developed a strong spatial sensibility that is exemplified in her paintings.

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