may 12, 2024

A Renaissance Man of the Art World

In the dynamic world of contemporary art, Vincent Messelier stands out as a true Renaissance man. With his multifaceted talents as an artist, coach, photographer and gallery director, he has carved out a unique niche in the art scene, bridging the gap between traditional and digital art, nurturing the growth of aspiring artists.

His artistic journey began in his native Flanders, where his Flemish heritage deeply influenced his aesthetic sensibilities. His paintings, often imbued with vibrant colors and bold lines, explore themes of human emotion, cultural identity, and the interplay between reality and perception. His contemporary art that he calls ‘meridianism’ is internationally appreciated and based on the meridians of the globe and the human body.

As his artistic reputation grew, Vincent’s passion for mentoring and guiding other artists led him to become an esteemed coach. With his wealth of experience and astute guidance, he has empowered numerous aspiring artists to hone their skills and navigate the challenges of the art world.

In recent years, Vincent has been recognizing the transformative power of AI, this technology supporting captivating artworks that seamlessly blend his signature style with the innovative possibilities of the digital realm.

His entrepreneurial spirit has also led him to establish his own art gallery, Art-home Gallery, which serves as a platform for showcasing and promoting the work of established artists. Through the gallery, he actively connects artists with collectors.

Vincent Messelier’s contributions to the art world extend far beyond his own artistic endeavors. As an artist, coach, and gallery director, he embodies the spirit of innovation, collaboration, and mentorship that is shaping the future of art. His multifaceted approach to art, seamlessly blending traditional and digital mediums, has opened up new avenues for artistic expression and engagement. Through his guidance and support for aspiring artists, he is shaping the next generation of creative minds. He is revolutionizing the way art is created, distributed, and appreciated. Vincent is a true Renaissance man of the art world, leaving an indelible mark on the landscape of contemporary art.

Excited to learn more about his artistic journey and his thoughts on the art world we asked him the following questions:

How did you discover your passion and launched your journey as a self-taught abstract artist?

It all hit me in a flash! Inspired by a reality show where someone bought a canvas and just went for it, I felt a surge of creativity. Without overthinking it, I grabbed some canvases, palette knives, brushes, and a book on drawing and painting. The book? Honestly, it only lasted ten seconds. Not knowing the difference between oil paint, acrylic paint, gouache, etc, I dove straight in with thick paint and a palette knife, feeling the colours come alive on the canvas. That’s the moment my artistic journey truly began!

What role has your Flemisch heritage played in shaping your artistic identity and approach to creativity?

As a Flemish artist, the strong work ethic is ingrained in me. But with no formal training, I had to carve my own path in the art world. Unburdened by strict rules, I found immense freedom to explore and express myself.

This artistic spark might have a deeper connection. My talented mother, who passed away when I was young, never actively pursued art herself. Yet, when I paint, it feels like an unconscious guidance from above, a connection I never knew existed.

Painting is my escape. With good music and a glass of wine, I enter a world of my own. There’s no preparation, just a blank canvas and the raw emotions of the moment. Inspiration strikes from everywhere: current events, documentaries on the Discovery Channel, and even the vastness of the universe.

It’s a truly miraculous feeling – pouring my soul onto the canvas, guided by intuition and the world around me.

Could you elaborate on the coined term 'meridianism' and how it influences the signature painting style?

As an artist, I quickly grasped that standing out from the crowd is key. That’s why I take a direct and dynamic approach. I work the paint straight onto the canvas with palette knives, mixing colors as I go. The beauty of this method? It’s an adventure! I never know exactly what the final product will be.

It’s a process guided by pure emotion – a symphony between me, the paint, and the music that fuels my creativity. From jazz to blues, funk to disco, French music and beyond, the rhythm dictates the mood and energy of the piece.

Looking back at my paintings, a recurring theme emerged: vertical and horizontal stripes and lines. It felt strange, yet undeniably me, a signature style that spoke volumes. This unique visual language became “Meridianism,” a name inspired by the Earth’s meridians and the meridians within our bodies, reflecting the flow and interconnectedness that guide my artwork.

In what ways do you believe art serves as a window into your thoughts, and is it by creating a unique connection between the artist and the audience? If yes, how so?

I try to give a message to my audience. This is my artistic statement

An Artist and his creations ‘A relation between the creator and the admirer is the most complex and unexplainable that ever existed. Without words, there is an incredible magnificent communication that reflects the inner passion between them. The art you buy from an artist is not simply an object but is an investment, An investment in a piece of a heart and soul… And even a piece of the creator’s life, because this piece of art is not only created as a result of hours of errors and experimentation, but also years of frustrations and moments of pure joy. Art is the most valuable way of communication, with knowing that the admirer and creator can live or understand it in a different way, knowing there is no right or wrong, only a strong powerful connection. This is art, touching people in their heart without wanting to hurt, doing big efforts to make people happy with the beauty of the passion and the power of imagination. This is my vision of art, the way I make it, right from my heart and soul. Art is my second skin!’

What are the preferred mediums that you enjoy working with in your artistic endeavours?

My artistic approach is highly adaptable. Depending on my creative vision, I explore a diverse range of materials. Palette knives are my go-to tools, often working with acrylic paints I create myself using pigments sourced from my favorite shop in Roussillon, France.

But I’m not afraid to push boundaries! I often combine these with oil paints, natural elements like herbs and coffee grounds, and even unconventional materials like wood foam.

The canvas I choose also varies – canvas panels, wood panels, even glass or plexiglass can become my artistic playground. Recently, my artistic journey took an unexpected turn. A friend surprised me with a truly unique gift – the head of a shark he caught himself in Spain 30 years ago! I can’t wait to see how I can incorporate this fascinating piece into a future artwork. I made this artwork, putting it on a wood panel.

With advancements in technology such as AI impacting various industries, including the arts, have you explored or considered incorporating AI tools or techniques into your artistic process, and if so, how do you plan this integration influencing your creative expression or artistic outcome?

My artistic journey doesn’t stop with traditional mediums. I’ve also ventured into the world of digital art, which allows me to explore my passion for photography. I capture a vast array of subjects – breathtaking landscapes, fiery sunsets, playful cloudscapes, bustling cityscapes, and even the beauty of animals and flowers.

My digital art process is quite unique. I begin with an existing painting or a portion of it as a base layer. Then, using software like Photoshop, PicsArt, Photoleap, and others, I strategically layer and manipulate multiple photographs. This allows me to create original and captivating compositions, all guided by my current inspiration.

It’s important to me that my art, digital or otherwise, remains authentically human-made. Inspiration flows from my heart and soul, not from artificial intelligence. Software is simply a tool I use to refine and manipulate, but the core creative spark remains entirely mine.

The increasing use of AI in creative fields worries me. Actors, writers, songwriters – all face the threat of automation. While I see the value of AI in the medical world, I believe human creativity is an essential part of our culture. Architecture, printing – these too should remain infused with the human touch. Our brains, not robots, must continue to be the driving force behind artistic expression.

What is the impact of your international experiences on your artistic expression?

My artistic journey began in a unique way. In 2006, while running my own successful cash collection company, I felt a creative spark ignite. It wasn’t until 2011, after selling the company, that I decided to fully pursue my passion for painting.

Drawn to the vibrant art scene of Dubai, the fastest-growing city in the world at the time, I set my sights on exhibiting there. Armed with determination and connections from a friend, I secured a meeting with the curator/director of a renowned art center. He connected with my artwork, and voila! My first solo exhibition became a reality.

The success of my Dubai exhibition proved to be a springboard. I was introduced to an interior designer working on a prestigious hotel project, resulting in the creation of 17 unique artworks adorning executive rooms, restaurants, and the main lobby. Media attention from the exhibition sparked further opportunities. Inquiries flooded in for exhibitions in New York, Barcelona, and Amsterdam.

This snowball effect propelled me onto the international art scene. Italy became my next focus, captivating audiences in Rome, Florence, Milan, Naples, and Venice. The art world, despite its vastness, can feel remarkably interconnected – once you’re on the map, opportunities arise worldwide.

Fueling my creative fire further, I began participating in art competitions, taking home several prestigious awards. My artwork caught the eye of publishers from esteemed art magazines and museum books, leading to coveted features and publications.

My story is an exemplar to the power of believing in yourself and investing in your passion. The initial steps are always the hardest, but with dedication, perseverance, and a bit of luck, seemingly impossible dreams can become a reality.

Looking beyond your paintings, how would you describe your wider contribution to the international art scene? What aspects of your work, besides creating art, do you consider most valuable?

It’s not my place to define my own artistic contribution. That privilege belongs to the clients, galleries, and art critics who encounter my work. Their perspectives shape my artistic journey.

This is why I value art competitions. The diverse judging panels offer a global perspective on artistic merit. It’s a valuable testing ground, forcing me to refine my skills and explore new ideas while receiving honest feedback from a wide range of art enthusiasts.

I’m a firm believer in forging my own path. “Me-too” art devoid of inspiration holds no appeal for me. Perhaps there’s a touch of the Renaissance spirit in my approach – a desire to experiment, innovate, and leave my own unique mark on the art world.

When working as a coach with artists at different stages of their careers, do you offer different types of coaching (e.g. technical skills, career guidance, creative inspiration)? How do you decide which approach is best for each artist?

For years, fellow artists have bombarded me with questions about navigating the art world. It’s more than just creating great art – it’s about building connections, strategizing your career, and knowing your goals.

Artists often wear multiple hats. While technical skills are essential, understanding the business side is crucial. That’s where I come in. I don’t offer painting instruction, but I can act as a coach, providing guidance and advice to help fellow artists achieve wider exposure.

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach. Through a tailored questionnaire, I help artists develop personalized game plans aligned with their unique profiles and aspirations. We collaborate, they take ownership of their artistic path, and I offer ongoing support and adjustments through monthly online follow-ups.

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach. Through a tailored questionnaire, I help artists develop personalized game plans aligned with their unique profiles and aspirations. We collaborate, they take ownership of their artistic path, and I offer ongoing support and adjustments through monthly online follow-ups. The art world is constantly evolving, and I believe in continuous learning. LinkedIn is a powerful tool for artists to connect with the right people – and I actively build connections with passionate and creative individuals worldwide.

Living from your art is a success story in itself. It’s a passionate pursuit, but there’s a business element too. Surround yourself with positive, supportive connections who believe in your vision. Shun negativity and jealousy – they have no place in the artistic journey.

Could you share insights about current projects and any upcoming artistic ventures?

I’m currently brimming with exciting projects! One particularly unique endeavour involves translating my artwork onto perfume flacons. A Dubai-based company contacted me, and we’re collaborating on initial prototypes. They aim to launch this innovative concept in the European market next year. Another project awaits a decision in Saudi Arabia, where I submitted a proposal to showcase my art in a prestigious hotel.

While creating art remains my core passion, I’ve discovered a fulfilling new dimension – coaching other artists. Helping them navigate the art world and achieve their goals is an incredibly rewarding challenge. My ambitious aim is to support 300 artists annually in the coming years – a mission that feels truly meaningful alongside my personal artistic endeavours. The international art scene continues to beckon. A recent inquiry from Hong Kong about a potential exhibition piqued my interest, and it’s definitely going on my wish list.

Thank you for the insightful questions!

Vincent Messelier

Copyright © 2024 TheBirdwing. All Rights Reserved.