I recently started working with ‘I Love Hart’, a company that is helping to develop emerging artist from across the globe. Leo Britto, an artist from Brazil, captures life in vibrant colours, each of his paintings tell a story, where he expresses his emotions through images and colour.
Leo Britto originally trained as a physiotherapist, but longed to be artist. Eventually he found he could no longer keep art as just a hobby, and embarked on a journey that would lead him to Paris. During the period of Impressionism, Paris was the centre of the Art world; Matisse, Chagall, Gaugin, Picasso, all found their way to this great city, to develop their style, and to find fame and fortune through their art. Leo Britto, similarly took inspiration from Paris, and it is clear through his work, that he has been greatly influenced by the Masters before him.
Similarly to Paul Gaugin (a Post Impressionist Artist), Britto’s women radiate sensuality, and are depicted as objects of desire. Their exaggerated curves exude femininity, much like the women Gauguin painted whilst in French Polynesia. Britto’s women have an ambiguous expression, they are mysterious, yet inviting.
Primitivism was an artistic movement that occurred towards the end of the Nineteenth Century. Primitivism was about striping art back to its roots, creating something that was pure, but also exotic and foreign to european culture. The movement has been characterized by exaggerating proportions, using geometric designs, and looking back to primitive art, such as the art works that could be found in Africa, and Native America. It would appear that Britto too, is taking art back in time, yet putting a contemporary stamp on it.
Picasso, when exploring the idea of Primitivism, he looked to African Masks, and incorporated them into his work. The idea of the mask also can represent the facade that we present to the world, but also the mask can be used to unveil what we are truly feeling inside. In Britto’s painting above, he uses the idea of the mask, to express repressed emotions of this woman.
Oscar D’Ambrosio, Member of the international Association of Art Critics (AICA Section Brazil), critiqued his working saying that:
“When the topic shifts to the urban universe, either of São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro or Paris, the gestural remains expressive. The presence of collages also establishes links with contemporary art regarding the mixture of techniques and materials in which all sorts of limits are questioned.
The charm of his work as a whole comes from a freshness and sincerity in the act of painting which is increasingly difficult to find. In a ready-made answers society and in an art market hooked on certain names and techniques, the arrival of Leo Britto brings something with which we all have much to learn from.”