Inspired by human emotions and the tedious details in everyday routine, Linnea Strid creates hyper-realistic oil paintings depicting the insignificant actions involving water that we mechanically repeat in any given day. In her upcoming show opening December 10th at Thinkspace entitled As It Falls Over You, Linnea explores the darker side of the human psyche conveyed through water, thereby opening the door to our most private moments and personal stories. Here Linnea talks about the inspiration behind her latest body of work, the moment she realized she wanted to become an artist and the rush she felt after selling her first painting.
The title As It Falls Over You suggests that a exploration of water portraits are at play. What's the inspiration behind your latest exhibit?
My main inspirations were water and human emotions in general. Mortality, fear of dying , fear of living. Loneliness. Anxiety in general. Not very cheerful themes perhaps, haha!
You were born in Sweden, but spent your teen years in Southern Spain where you began pursuing art as a career. Tell us about life in Spain and the inspirations that influenced your decision to become an artist.
Life in Spain was fun for a teenager and very different from life in Sweden. The climate is similar to what you got here in California and just a completely unfamiliar culture and language. It was a very interesting time that I have learned a lot from. I have always been drawing and painting for as long as I can remember and in Spain there were a lot of art shows going on everywhere and it was so easy to participate -just about anyone was welcome- and that was a contributing factor to me stepping into the art world little by little. I had my first solo show over there in 2003 when I was 20 years old, showing a huge amount of big and small watercolor paintings, and almost sold out. That was a huge rush and I just knew that I wanted to do that for a living in the future.
When and what was the first piece of art you sold and how did it feel?
I began drawing portraits for my classmates when I was 11 - 12 years old. I didn't earn any money on it though, I just got attention and some popularity. The first painting I actually sold however, was a small oil painting of a still life: a couple of pears on a wrinkled table cloth. I was 16 years old and was showing it in a local supermarket exhibition in Spain. I remember I got very excited over the fact that someone I didn't even know was actually willing to pay for something that I had made.
If you could hang one piece of art from art history in your home or studio, what would it be and why?
That question is just too hard to answer! I love art so much, and I have like a million favorite artists. However, thinking about it... Just before coming to LA I went to a wonderful show in Stockholm by a Swedish artist called Karin Broos. She's an amazing photorealist painter with a very cool way of telling stories with her art. I'd be honored to have one of her paintings in my home.
Tell us something about yourself we wouldn't necessarily know.
Deep down, I'm actually a pretty shy person.
If I were to spend the day with Linnea, what could I expect?
A long walk with the dog at the seaside would be nice. Expect me to laugh a lot, because that's what I normally do.
As It Falls Over You opens Saturday, December 10th 5-8pm at Thinkspace Gallery.