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“Amor fati, embrace your destiny.”

Clara Bolle, Daphne legs, 2019, 100cmx70cm, acrylic paint on paper

Clara Bolle, Daphne legs, 2019, 100cmx70cm, acrylic paint on paper

“Creating has been a natural way to explore the world around me.”

Name

Clara Bolle

Profession

Philosopher/Artist/Writer

Website

clarabolle.com

© Clara Bolle, 2019

© Clara Bolle, 2019

Who are you? What do you do?

Wow, a philosophical question and we haven’t even started yet ;). I don’t know who I truly am apart from my name but I know what I’m doing: I write, I paint, I draw, I think. I feel, I live, I love.

Where are you from?

I live in Rotterdam with my husband but I grew up in different places in the Netherlands (mainly in the countryside).

Your style in 3 words?

Expressive, explosive, colourful.

Your weakness? Your strength?

My weakness is my strength: being a total control freak!

Clara Bolle,Thisbe , 2019, 50 cm x 65 cm, oil pastel on paper, small

Clara Bolle,Thisbe , 2019, 50 cm x 65 cm, oil pastel on paper

What makes you different? Good question! Are we that different from each other? What do you mean by different? Do you mean a different style? What sets us apart as a human, as an artist, as a thinking being? To be honest I don’t know but I do know that asking the question sets a number of other questions in motion. Maybe it’s more about letting me think about myself, instead of giving you a straight answer?

When did you decide to become an artist?

I never really decided to become a philosopher or a writer or an artist. Fortunately, I grew up in a very creative family: my mother is a writer and my father is a philosopher, and both are surrounded by artists, writers and thinkers. To me, creating has been a natural way to explore the world around me.

Clara Bolle, Metamorphine, 2019, 65 cm x 50 cm, oil pastel on paper small

Clara Bolle, Metamorphine, 2019, 65 cm x 50 cm, oil pastel on paper small

What do you find most fascinating about your work? The relationship between images, words and that which we call ‘reality’. How can we think not only in words but also in images? How we can create something that changes reality by simply adding something to the world (practical or idealogical)? The associative and synthetic mind fascinates me.

A few words about your favourite creation? My favorite creation is the Thisbe painting, one of my latest paintings. The reason I especially enjoy this painting is that I finally get the sense of becoming close to my own truth as an artist. It’s a small answer to the question: why do I create?

Someone else’s work that inspired or inspires you…

There are so many inspiring artists, Western and non-Western, alive and long gone. I’m amazed by the creative force of people. Currently, I’m very much into the work of Marguerite De Geus, Frederik Naeblerod, Matt Macken, Lee Johnson, Rhiannon Salibury , Aneta Kajzer and many more.

Who would you like to work with someday and why?

It would be an honour to work with Joep van Lieshout from Atelier Van Lieshout. His themes correspond to some extent with my own subjects: biopolitics, bodies, transformations, etc. His sculptures are very powerful in the sense that they confront you, but in a playful way.

A new project coming up or an idea you want to work on?

Currently I’m working on the theme of transformation and what it means to transform. Nowadays transformations seem to have a strong medical dimension/connotation, whether it’s the use of hormones, genetic modification or prosthetic limbs. However, transformations also have a long literary history, from Ovid to Kafka. Take for example the story of Daphne in Ovid’s Metamorphoses, a classic story of transformation. In short, Daphne does not want her unwanted suitor Apollo to pursue her, and she changes into a tree to fend off Apollo. Daphne transformed from a nymph into a laurel tree, and in the process gets a new identity in the form of a symbol of the ruler (the laurel wreath). What if Daphne could forge a new mythology herself, of her being a laurel tree?

Clara Bolle, Metamorphine 3, 2019, 100 cm x 70 cm, acrylic paint on paper

Clara Bolle, Metamorphine 3, 2019, 100 cm x 70 cm, acrylic paint on paper

Finish the sentence „More important than my career is…“

I don’t view my work as an artist, writer and philosopher as a career. It’s a way of life!

2019: Where are we going?

Unfortunately, the year 2019 is almost over. I’m planning an exhibition and a position as an artist-in-residency for 2020. I’m looking forward to it very much!

When the going gets tough…

Ask for help or pour yourself a glass of wine. That does the trick for me.

Put on your future vision glasses: What direction is our generation moving in, what will our world look like in 50 years?

Wow! That’s such a big question. I’ll try to answer this question both on a personal level and more in general. Philosophers are known to have a somewhat pessimistic outlook on life and I’m no different. I always call myself a nihilist in the sense that if you don’t expect anything from life, you gain the freedom to do whatever (for good or for bad). Zero (nihil) as a number and as a philosophy gives you the chance to let things grow, it’s fertile ground to explore. And to answer your question in general terms: it’s only recently that we live in peaceful times in Europe. Let’s hope it stays that way. We have the duty to safeguard this treasure.

Clara Bolle, Daphne breasts, 2019, 100cmx70cm, acrylic paint on paper, small

Clara Bolle, Daphne breasts, 2019, 100cmx70cm, acrylic paint on paper, small

What would you do if you could change the World? If you change one thing in the world, it sets in motion a number of chances, and who knows what the outcome will be. I’ll take my chances and let the dice roll. Amor fati, embrace your destiny (or embrace coincidence if you don’t believe in destiny).

If the universe is everything and it’s expanding, what is it expanding into? Into the great nothingness, but we won’t exist by that time.

Tell us about your future plans… I want to become a famous artist with a Bentley and a fur coat and an apartment in Paris, that’s it, that’s all I want from the future.

Your city’s favourite spots?

Rotterdam is such an amazing city, it’s been on the rise for several years now. It doesn’t really have a city centre but there are several spots in the city that I like, for example the Kralingse Plas (a woodland area in the city), Chabot museum (Chabot was an expressionist artist living in Rotterdam) and the Gergiev Festival (Gergiev is an excellent Russian conductor and every year he visits Rotterdam with a classical music festival).

Last but not least: what is your favourite Song?

I love music, like every human being I guess. Anyway, there are songs that I return to every now and then such as Scheherazade by Rimsky-Korsakov and Joker in the Pack by The Adicts (I know, so edgy ;))

Clara Bolle, Pyramus, 2019, 65 cm x 50 cm, oil pastel on paper, small

Clara Bolle, Pyramus, 2019, 65 cm x 50 cm, oil pastel on paper, small

One last statement please: „Wood or stone, gold or art?

‘I don’t understand the question and I won’t respond to it’ by the great Lucille Bluth.

Your #…?

clarabolle