Thursday 4 August 2011

Piet Lap

Piet Lap. Note his palette arrangements

I first became aware of Piet Lap when I bought `Realistic Abstracts' by Keest van Aalst. The initial attraction among some of the artists featured was Viktoria Prischedko, but I explored the others  and came upon Piet Lap, and some more who I may highlight in future. Piet, a Dutch artist born in 1943, isn't among the younger element but what an artist! His work featured in the abstract book is more inclined in that direction but on finding his website I discovered a range of representational paintings, in a very expressionistic style, that are absolutely stunning.  In order to find out more I contacted him with a number of questions and also asked permission to show some of his paintings. The reply was prompt, although he checked my blog out first, and answered all my queries.

St Kilda

The paintings shown are all quite large as many are full sheet and some even larger. Details and individual sizes are shown on his website. His paintings are grouped in several categories with Landscapes, Dutch, Italian, Scottish and Others together with Still Lifes and Other Works. A full biography is on the website.

 The famous fish market at Venice

Another Venice view

Piet likes painting boats: those stranded on beaches and also derelicts

An example of his Still Lifes.

What an amazing panoramic view!

As for specifics to quote Piet " I have 40 colours on my palette, far too much of course, but half of them I seldom use (just in case..) A must for me are French Ultramarine, Cobalt Blue, Caerulean Blue, Prussian Blue, Indigo, Paynes Grey, Quinacridone Rose, Cadmium Red, Purple Madder, Caput Mortuum, Burnt Sienna, Raw Sienna, Sepia, Raw Umber, Burnt Umber, Cadmium Yellow Citron, Cadmium Yellow, Hookers Green Dark, and...white gouache. All tubes Winsor & Newton, Schminke and Talens (Rembrandt)".

Regarding brushes "Some expensive Kolinsky sables, some cheap flat brushes, but mostly Da Vinci Cosmotop mix brushes in all sizes from 6 to 32".

Paper " I have tried all sorts of paper but nowadays I stick to Arches 300gsm and 640gsm Torchon (Rough)".

His approach to painting "I have no specific approach, it all depends on the subject you paint, on intuition, on your mood for an experimental approach, on the outdoor circumstances".

Other comments " I like travelling, it's half the fun in a painters life. And that's where I differ from most of the other watercolourists. I always paint my landscapes on the spot, except of course my aerial views of Dutch rivers, which I photographed from a helicopter.  ..."Making a watercolour is like chess playing: try to think about the next two or three steps you intend to make, eventually prepare a sufficient amount of some colours, but don't rigidly stick to your plan: things can change on your way, so be receptive. If you act do it with speed and determination".

 Not sure if I'm supposed to post this but his parting comment  was "A tip:in my gear is a hipflask with `water for life' it clears one's mind. Don't tell anybody"... " "Best wishes and have painters fun yours Piet Lap".

As I've already said this is one fabulous artist and obviously a great guy.. His website is  If you like what you've seen, and I'm sure most will, have a look at all the fabulous paintings featured. Thank you Piet for being so open and helpful.


Unknown said...

I love this post Peter.. i did not know this painter, some of those views are gorgeous..

Peter Ward said...

Have a look at his website Carlos for more superb paintings.

Unknown said...

Piet Lap has been my favourite artist for years now...I cant look at his work for too long because it overwhelms me with its beauty...It would be a dream come true to be able to paint like that, such a shame he doesnt offer workshops or Youtube videos of his painting method and process...the colours he uses are heart-breaking in their beauty, his sense of colour is phenomenal. I have been trying to get the same pinks he uses (tea pink) but that has so far eluded me. He is a real inspiration, but he also terrifies me with the level of talent he has - he's set the bar too high!