All images via Pinterest
I am a firm believer that the greatest talents and the most passionate artists have had the greatest characters. Their sensibility is a testament of their inner beauty. Besides, it takes infinite courage to put your soul into your work and show it to the world.
Marlene Dumas (born 3 August 1953 in South Africa but currently living and working in Amsterdam, The Netherlands) is, without the slightest doubt, one of the most passionate, soulful, and influential artists of our times. Since she began painting portraits in the 1980’s, she has changed the narrative of race, sex, gender, and economic inequality through her work, which has placed her as the most expensive female living artist in the world. However, her name is inexplicably still relatively unknown.
Personally, I would say her work is a mixture of social realism and expressionism, although it is unique and very contemporary in its exploration of human topics (feminism, gay rights, ethnic and social inequality, etc).
Differently to most artists, she doesn’t use models, but instead works with images from the media as well as from her own photography. Her paintings, where Egon Schiele could be named as an influence, are mostly composed of oil on canvas and ink on paper, where she wipes the pigment to create distorted and smudged faces and figures, which is one of the main characteristics of her work.
Scroll down to explore a selection of some of her most important works along with some of my favorites.