World Fine Art Professionals and their Key-Pieces, 284 - Camille van Neer

World Fine Art Professionals and their Key-Pieces, 284 - Camille van Neer

Recently, the MLB gallery featured the exhibition ‘Landscape & Portraits’ by Camille van Neer. The gallery had as many as 66 paintings and drawings. Camille van Neer has a striking, expressive use of color. He uses different techniques for both landscapes and portraits.

To start with the landscapes: in the paintings ‘Landsmeer’ and ‘Ilperveld’ you see the typical Dutch landscape of elongated meadows, ditches and lakes in the colors yellow and blue. It is exactly what you see when you approach Schiphol by plane from abroad and the plane makes another round over North Holland because it cannot land yet. The typical polder landscape, made by human hands.

Camille van Neer turns it into something very special: the meadows are yellow and the sky (at ‘Ilperveld’) and the water (at ‘Landsmeer’) are ultramarine and turquoise blue. Very nice.

Man and nature

With the portraits you see the same intensification in use of color. See Jan's face and his self-portraits, including one with a purple beard. In addition, Camille is a master of facial expression. See the portraits of Georg, Willem, John and Leonora.

Camille van Neer was happy to provide some explanation. Camille van Neer: “In my work you see people and nature, in that order. I am immensely interested in who someone is and what deeply motivates him to think and do the things he or she thinks or does. With a portrait I always try to find out as much as possible who is behind my model's face and what moves him. I look for life stories, look at the work (I usually draw and paint, but not always, artists) and look for people who have made a decisive turn in the life of my model. ”

Oil paint and charcoal

Often the latter are also portrayed. One person / artist evokes the other. Most models do not come from his neighborhood, in Amsterdam. Some have long been dead. That is why he almost always works with photos. He prefers oil paint, immediately followed by charcoal. "In my landscapes I try to bring together perception and my own feeling in a total experience that I try to depict on paper or canvas."

Why are people and nature so important to him? “It's actually very simple: apart from humans and nature, what else is there to investigate? I find the reality so fascinating that I have never felt the need to make completely abstract work in which the relationship with man and the natural has become completely invisible or inaccessible to the viewer. ”

Key work

Does he have a key work? He has: it is his last major self-portrait, made this year. "I think this self-portrait shows what I can express from the depths of myself."

Camille van Neer (1960) took a drawing course when he was six, but only took up drawing and painting again four years ago. He also teaches. He is an art teacher in schools. As a care artist he is active in a residential care center in Almere. During the weekend he gives drawing and painting lessons in two children's studios in the Indische Buurt in Amsterdam East.


1) Self-portrait | oil on canvas | 90 x 90 cm (2020),  2) Self-portrait | oil on canvas | 120 x 90 cm (2020),  3) Jan | oil on canvas | 50 x 40 cm (2019), 4) Georg | oil on canvas | 50 x 50 cm (2018), 5) Willem | acrylic on canvas | 50 x 50 cm (2018), 6) John | sepia pencil on paper | 30 x 20 cm (2019), 7) Leonora | pastel on paper | 40 x 30 cm (2019), 8) Jan | oil on canvas | 50 x 40 cm (2019), 9) Ilperveld | oil on canvas | 80 x 100 cm (2020), 10 Landsmeer | oil on canvas | 78 x 118 cm (2020), 11) Buiksloterdijk bridge | oil on canvas | 75 x 115 cm (2020), 12) Sloterplas | oil on canvas | 40 x 120 cm (2020).



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