‘I would say the Pandemic period gave me my best paintings.’Diego Palacios
Believe it or not, professional painter Diego Palacios was first trained to be an economist and a wine taster, before he began his true passion of painting in 2014. He participated in artist residencies in Sweden and Scotland before he decided in early 2018 to move to Leipzig and be part of the LIA programme. “Art was more substantial, and I had to give it all away to paint,” says Diego. Now, painting is a big part of his life. Diego’s paintings reveal various levels that shift between consciousness and the subconscious. This impression is supported by the play of light, shadow, and transparency. His works indicate an old master approach, but is broken by contemporary subjects and elements, creating a new category of its own. Image shifting forms the emphasis in the oeuvre of the Chilean painter. He defines himself as a figurative painter, with a ‘particular way of confronting the painting problem’.
In the last few years, he has participated in numerous events, festivals, exhibitions and shows, such as a solo show, held in Leipzig, Germany, held this summer. Today, we sit down for a discussion with Diego, covering an array of topics, from his personal life and artistic career, and more.
A Sit Down with Diego Palacios
Did the pandemic shape your artwork? If so, how?
Hi Gülce, a pleasure to be back here at Artleove. The pandemic was coincidentally for me the time in which I arrived at the end of a painting stage, in which I worked on both Monochrome and Entanglement series, during the pandemic times I would say this period gave its best paintings. I could not say that the sentimental experience of the pandemic affected my art very directly, but I can say it was during this time my interest for the Nerdrumites, their Cave of Apelles and the Apelles palette started to grow. They did affect the way I paint, as since I am applying much more paint, using less color and am sometimes less concerned about details everywhere within a work. Their influence conceptually was more limited, though.
After the pandemic I also decided I wanted to move into a studio of my own, as before I would work at a big and somewhat nice shared studio. The private studio has many other advantages and more freedom.
You can support Diego by checking his art here in our shop.
Kissed, Diego Palacios$120.00
What do you wish to communicate through your artwork?
It depends on each work but I can at least say my message is more of an emotional one. I am trying to convey more feelings than a rational idea to be worked around in one’s head.
Most of the information coming from painting is arriving directly and automatically as one is confronted to the work, a little bit like when one gets a first impression about something.
I try to make this first impression a little bit ambiguous, not fully comprehensible, hopefully strong. The particular feeling I try to communicate depends on each work, but the concept of daily life and intimacy are pretty present overall.
What exactly is it that you want to capture in paintings of human figures in motion?
A sense of indefiniteness, possibility, time..
What inspires you the most? Do you get inspiration from other disciplines?
I guess I find painting inspiring since it makes me feel I am using my time to value a lot for my life. I also see art history and its mysteries as pretty inspiring. Also, I find inspiration in other painters, life, sex, everything…
What is the greatest piece of advice you ever received?
Find out what you want to do and then stick to it for the rest of your life. Persist.
Which city do you live in? Do you get inspiration from your city?
I live in Leipzig, Germany, which I find as inspiring as depressing. A good mix.
We understand that you were born and raised in Chile, do you find inspiration from your South American Roots, and do you reflect this in your work?
I am sure where one comes from has an influence on what you do. I see my work in a more universal way as I very seldom paint culturally charged themes that are easily identifiable, paintings which want to speak to humans coming from every place.
Probably the cultural influence one can mostly see in my work is that of my direct environment, which is Leipzig in Germany. Grosses Festmahl could be the only work in which one sees a clear relationship to liberal western society – in which I’d also to some extent classify the Chilean one. There is also some cultural charge on ‘One more afternoon’ in which you can guess some hint of a will to speak about inmigration and integration.
You can check Diego’s paintings and prints on our Artleove Shop.
A Few Quick-fire Questions for some Fun
If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
I’d be fine with lasagna or tacos.
What is the last film you watched?
Jungle Beat, a kid’s film in which some animals convince a kind alien not to conquer the earth by means of human connection.
What sort of music do you like to listen to while you’re working?
From Chopin to Opeth. Indie and Rap. Many painting hours need many playlist hours, and variety.
What do you like to do when you’re not working?
Cooking, drinking. These are my favourites.
“I want to capture a sense of indefiniteness, possibility, time.”Diego Palacios
How do you earn a living? Are there other things you do – besides your art – to survive?
I am a full-time painter, and so I rely on it to live.
Follow his work on Instagram