Juan Maria Bollé is a Flemish painter with Spanish roots on
grandmother’s side. He is born in Vilvoorde, Belgium, in December
In 1985 he finished his studies at the St. Lucas Institute of Fine
Arts in Brussels. Presently he is headmaster at the Academy of Fine
Arts of Liedekerke.
During his studies he first explored drawing and black and white
printmaking, with an emphasis on the etching technique. After his
studies he focused on the medium of oil painting. Bollé’s first
paintings grew out of the European figurative tradition and were
based on classic disciplines such as the portrait, the nude, the
still life and the landscape.
From 1985 till 1995 he had a few one-man exhibitions in Belgian art
galleries and has been selected for several group exhibitions and
Since 1995 Bollé travelled through South-America, Africa and Asia.
Those trips influenced his work profoundly. During a period of
artistic crises, the artist destroys most of his paintings.
Bollé is searching for a new approach and chooses for a temporary
artistic isolation. This results in a totally new style in which. a
more realistic iconography took over.
His paintings not only try to express specific figurative
characteristics but evoke the unchanging universal elements in an
almost mystical sense.
Vision and contrast
Juan Maria Bollé
is a painter 'pur sang’. In the shadows of contemporary art, his
paintings refers to a language that matches with the international
revival of figurative painting. In addition, he is in dialogue with
historical tradition and adds his personal vision on painting.
His paintings are 'slow' paintings. They do not want to seduce or
provoke. The spectator is invited to take his time to ‘read’ them
carefully. Bollé is not searching for what makes a work of art
contemporary or not, but on the contrary, to what makes a painting timeless.
Left and right of the central image the paintings are flanked by two
monochrome color fields. By choosing the color and tonality of those
color fields arises an interaction with the figurative image, they
complement each other.
Maria Bollé’s paintings are based on photographic reproductions to
launch a personal manipulation and interpretation of the image. The
realistic fragments are common, but the global context and
interpretation is complex. The paintings evoke a scale of
associations and emotions, are often suggestive and characterised by
a multiplicity of meaning. Therefore they transcend the realistic
Bollé’s paintings are
not let by grand gestures, but are marked by an ambiguous,