‘Usually I start with an idea and without really planning much I just let my hand lead the process, from the first strokes and colour choices to the later stages of painting. Personally I have always created art by instinct and mood rather than planning. It is almost as if I am also a viewer during the process and something about that connects my creative experience to that of the viewers of the finished piece, with whom I share my feelings of hope and joy. 

Most often I hear about the experience of joy from all my collectors and audience, which is wonderful. One of my favourite directors Ingmar Bergman created a film;  ’Till glädje’ (To Joy). I think within my inner world, or ‘archetype’ as Carl Jung might say, there is the constant energy of joy, and the viewer can share that.’ Özlem Thompson

Özlem was born in Istanbul, and although interested in art from a very early age, she obtained an undergraduate degree in biology and completed her master’s degree in botany with a thesis on the subject of ‘Exotic Plants and Their Usage in Industrial Design’.

After graduating she decided to listen to her inner voice and concentrate on her art, making it her career focus.  She moved to Belsize Park, North London, where she works and lives in the same flat where Mondrian used to paint before the start of the Second World War.  While drawing was always something she enjoyed, Özlem realised that she wanted to make her mark as a painter.  Influenced by some of the great artists such as Mondrian, Miro and Kandinsky, she began creating large scale acrylic pieces, using vibrant colours.  Her background in biology and organic structures became a strong influence on her work, and key to her process is the abstraction of forms of nature to effectively describe the concepts that flow from her subconscious.  

While she views her work as a reflection of how she sees and interprets the world, the impromptu flow of strong colours and shapes is intended to effect ‘user-defined’ feelings and impressions, and to facilitate a wide range of interpretation and interaction between the viewer and the artist:  Merging intellectual concepts with visual ideas, using bold colours to express feelings, and mixing real and imagined organic structures with one another. This creates the impression of dream-like world, a vivid explosion of nature meeting fantasy.

Above all colours satisfy her more than anything and she hopes to share this feeling with the viewer.  Her work has been well received and her recognition is growing world-wide.

‘Garden of Joy’ by Özlem Thompson

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