Open call for photographers! Estação, Canelas, Portugal

Exhibit your photos in an original venue in Estação in February or March 2022! Open theme.

This is an open call for photographers, who would like to participate in the physical exhibition of their works in Estação, a very special and artistically unique venue in Canelas, Portugal (15 min drive from Porto).

The Expo will start on 29/01/2022 and finish on 27/03/2022, and will consist of 4 phases of two weeks each.

About Estação

Estação is a cultural project resulting from a partnership between the Council of Canelas, Town hall of Estarreja, and the artist Mário Afonso (who published his works in BAV’s Street Photography 2021 book), with the assistance of artist Rita Castanheira. 

Estação is being explored in order to disseminate the work of national and international artists from various artistic areas, such as photography, painting, video art, music and others. Exhibitions are held every two months, offering audience free access to a wide range of cultural initiatives.

Originally, the building where Estação is situated was designed for the purpose of serving as a train station. Although it currently presents itself as a gallery, it has always maintained its original identity. This has been a point of interest for artists when conceiving site-specific projects to be exhibited in the space. 

Estação is also right next to the BioRia, the Natural Heritage of Estarreja, which has led to the organization of multiple tours to the local natural attractions. This is due to our interest in environmental issues and goal to inspire young and older audiences by experiencing the beauty of the surrounding nature.

Detailed offer of the open call:

  • 2 weeks physical exhibition in Estação
  • The Expo will last 2 months in total, and will consist of 4 phases. Each artist will exhibit for two weeks.
  • In addition, each photographer will be featured on BAV’s and Estação websites and social media.
  • Each photographer will receive two copies of a printed catalog (shipping within continental Europe included, for other locations shipping costs will be agreed individually).
  • All works will be printed and framed by BAV, no need to ship your works to Canelas.
  • Advertisement costs are already included in the participation fee.

Open call conditions and fees:

  • Due date to send your entry – December the 5th, 2021,
  • 20 artists will be selected, open theme,
  • each artist may expose 3 to 6 works, that will be printed in 50 x 70 size and framed by BAV,
  • participation costs are total of 280€ per artist, payable after the selection, latest by December the 20th, 2021.

In case of any questions please send an email to:

Check relation from our Expo held in Brussels in October, 2021 here.

Art endures and the artist visits and revisits it!

Art can transcend eras and has that timeless visual quality which I really enjoy. – says Rachel Mary Prout who is a British street and social documentary photographer.

by Madalina Dragos

The original language of this article is English. If you read it in another language, it means it is an automatic translation.

She says also that the job of a photographer is to narrate a story of people, place, time or situation and the artistic skill of the photographer lies in finding a unique perspective, learning to view the mundane in a new way and, above all, being inspired by the subject and wanting to tell its story.
I’m sharing with you thru this interview a page from her story

The interview:

Which photographer has influenced you the most in your art?

Fairly predictably for a street photographer, I have to say Vivian Maier and Robert Frank. Both of them capture exactly the sort of images that I most enjoy, but from fresh and unusual perspectives.

What is the piece of art that changed your life?

There’s not one specific piece of art that transformed my life in a moment of revelation or anything like that, rather there are many works that inspired me in different ways; for example Claude Monet’s “Waterloo Bridge” made me fall in love with the idea of an old, smoky, industrial London, the music of The Doors made me want to break away from 9-5 routine and have the freedom to be more creative, Lord of the Flies (my favourite book) made me want to explore exotic locations, and so on. So my motivations are an amalgamation of all of those things.

Do you think that artists create from their own suffering?

Some artists yes. There’s definitely a connection between suffering and art, be it painting, literature, music, even comedy. I think a lot of artists channel their personal struggle into their art as a way of expressing or releasing it. I would say the opposite is true for me though; I take photos of things that I enjoy looking at and feel inspired by, so by definition my work and the process of creating it is rooted in joy.

If you could travel in time, would you go to the past or future, and why?

I’d go to the 1960s, I love everything about it: the music, the fashion…and I could photograph the political movements of the time!

Which living or dead artist would you like to be your teacher?

Diane Arbus would be a good one; she worked a lot with marginalized groups and people living on the fringe of society so she’d probably have some good advice on how to approach subjects and put them at ease.

Do you have an idol?

Amelia Earhart, I admire her courage and her drive. I also have a tremendous amount of respect for women who didn’t conform to society’s ideals but were successful nonetheless, like Frida Kahlo, Janis Joplin and Cass Elliot.

Do you want to be the muse of an artist whether if he is alive or dead?

No, I would rather be the artist!

Bruxelles Art Vue interview streetphotography

Which living or dead artist would like to have dinner with and why?

Frida Kahlo, I think she’d be very interesting to talk to and she could give me some style advice.

When do you feel most connected with Universe?

I’ve been living in Costa Rica for the last few months, near a beautiful beach. I like to go there early in the morning when the beach is almost empty except for the monkeys in the trees, and sit on the sand looking out at the Pacific Ocean with the sound of the monkeys and the birds in the jungle behind me. That makes me feel quite calm and at one with the world.

What would be your heaven or hell look like?

Heaven would be palm trees, cocktails, mint chocolate and the smell of Thai cooking, and Hell would be full of ringing alarm clocks, pneumatic drills and car stereos blasting rap music at maximum volume.

What is it that no one or very few people know about you?

I enrolled in a Nursing degree at university but dropped out after a year.

What is something that everybody loves but you can’t stand?

Cake. It sets my teeth on edge. I get cheese on my birthday instead.

Who would play you in your bio movie, and what be its title?

I don’t mind as long as they cast Joanna Lumley as Old Rachel.

What is your life’s big question?

Should I have another square of this chocolate?

Do you have a pet?

Not of my own, but there’s a family dog called Louise who lives with my parents. I have lots of iguanas in my garden and I’ve started naming them, does that count?

If animals could talk for a day, to what animal would like to talk to?

A giant panda, to find out their thoughts on being an endangered species. Maybe they have a solution that humans haven’t thought of yet?

What was the happiest day in your life?

I like to think it hasn’t happened yet, so I can still look forward to it.

Rachel Mary Prout portrait

If you had a superpower, what would it be and what would you do with it the most?

Teleportation, because I’m afraid of flying. I’d use it for travelling… because obviously having every particle in your body disassembled and then reassembled elsewhere is a far less intimidating prospect than boarding a plane.

What color do you like?

I like strong colors, which is weird seeing as I mainly work in black and white. My favorite color is yellow, but I also like orange and turquoise.

BAV artist interview

Looking back in art’s history do you believe that it is hard to be an artist or not and why!?

It’s easy to be an artist, but very difficult to get recognition for it. I wonder what we’re missing out on, from all those artists that went undiscovered?

When did you know you want to be a photographer, and what was your first subject?

My first subject was a border collie called Roy, the family dog when I was a child. He was a very patient model. I got my first camera when I was about 9 or 10 and I always enjoyed using it, but didn’t think seriously about photography until much later, and it took even longer to find a genre that suited me.

I was interested in travel photography as a teenager, although back then I’d never traveled further than France. I used to go to the travel agent in town every Saturday and collect brochures, take them home and pore over photographs of the Grand Canyon and the Great Wall of China and dream that one day I’d be able to photograph those places too.

When I finally started travelling as an adult, I quickly learned that the best way to tell the story of a place or a culture is by photographing the local people, and I started experimenting with street photography. That’s when it started to take off and when I started getting positive feedback, and I’ve been pursuing photography seriously ever since.

Do you think that image processing with the help of technology makes you less of an artist or not and why?

This is a tough question to answer! I try to keep processing to a minimum and to get it right “in camera”, but I’m extremely grateful for the help of Lightroom or whatever to make the final picture as impactful as possible. I’m not a fan of manipulating images to the point that it doesn’t resemble what was there in the first place, I think that part of a photographer’s skill is to capture a situation without relying on technology to fix any problems later…although I’m sure that thousands of graphic artists would be ready to argue with me about that!

Rachel Mary Prout streetphotography interview BAV

What style do you think that represents you?

What I aspire to and how it usually turns out are two very different things!

What is inspiring you during the creative process and to create?

It starts with an idea in my mind, actually it’s more of a mood or a feeling. That mood or feeling can be inspired by anything, it doesn’t necessarily have to be visual. It could be a piece of music or song lyrics, a newspaper headline, someone’s hairstyle, a beer label, the color of paint on a wall and so on, and that will trigger an idea in my mind’s eye of a photo that I’d like to make, based on that.

A lot of the inspiration comes from the past, 1950s American beat literature is a big one – that conjures up black and white images of men leaning against a wall smoking cigarettes – but also from different cultures and traditions, and the way that people look and behave around the world.

I like photos that seem timeless, where you don’t know if the photo was taken in 2020, or 1992, or 1977 and I often aim for that in my own work. I’m also interested in politics, particularly political discord and protest movements; I spent a lot of time before the pandemic on both sides of the Atlantic photographing people’s reactions to Brexit and to Donald Trump’s government, and it was very satisfying and exciting to be able to record those moments in history.

I know that light is vital to your compositions, what is your favorite time of day?

Any photographer will tell you that dawn and dusk are the “golden hours”, when the light is at its best for photography. My personal favourite is early morning, really early, before anyone else is around. I’m always awake by 6 am, even at weekends, and I make some coffee and think about what I’m going to do that day. It’s peaceful and relaxing.

Mornings are also a great time of day for street photography – the market traders will be setting up their stalls, there are usually some good characters on the buses and the subways, and the city is starting to come to life.

How do you see the world in black, white and shades of gray? Is the camera set to black and white or, after taking the color photo, invert it to monochrome?

The camera is always set to colour, I like to compare colour with monochrome when I process the images. That said, I tend to see my subjects in black and white, I can be walking along a street and see a potential image and already my mind will be registering it as black and white.

It’s a useful way to approach black and white photography as you learn what will work and what won’t before you even take the photo; green trees for example tend to make a distracting background in a black and white photo, and blue sky always ends up looking flat and grey – it’s important to have some clouds to add drama to a black and white photo of sky.

On the other hand, strong angles, billboards and lettering, and graffiti work really well in monochrome. So I’m seeing in black and white, and registering every aspect of the potential image.

You have a category of photos called Fine art, in painting there are different methods and working techniques to get fine art, how do you get there in photography?

I use different techniques in camera. One of my favourite things to do is to photograph a reflection in water and then invert the image, it’s simple but effective and gives the impression of a watercolour or an oil painting.

I also experiment with shutter speeds and intentional camera movement; the photo of the girl in the yellow hat was taking by zooming out at the same time as pressing the shutter release.

zooming out at the same time as pressing the shutter release

I think that your photographs are refined, sophisticated, visibly dynamic or in unstable balance, metamorphoses of exact representations in timeless artistic images, aiming even at “abstraction of time”.

Do you believe that: Art travels through time or the artist travels through art?

I think it’s a bit of both. Art can be the by-product of a specific era or event, as is the case with photojournalism and a lot of literature and cinema, but it can also transcend eras and have that timeless visual quality which I really enjoy. Inspiration comes from both places, so the art endures and the artist visits and revisits it.

Rachel says also:

For me, photography exists to capture moments, moods, expressions and emotions: a lasting record of a fleeting second in time. That moment can be beautiful and happy or bleak and ugly – the important thing is recording it as accurately as possible, and scenes of anger and misery can be as compelling as scenes of colour and joy.

Some of Rachel’s works have been published in the BAV’s Street Photography 2021 book:

Bruxelles Art Vue Streetphotography 2021

Rachel is also a Global hourly winner in CBRE Urban Photographer of the Year competition 2018, and a runner-up in CBRE Urban Photographer of the Year competition 2018, 2017.

Visual analysis by Madalina Dragos

Rachel’s compositions always talk about people, whether they are works, events, spaces, environments or feelings!

Rachel’s favorite subject as a photographer is “the human being” and the main way to talk about it is through monochrome. Whether it’s about portraits, street photos, crowds against each other, street architectures, Rachel through her artistic approach gives them a dramatic atmosphere and captures the viewer through a content transformed from something transient into something spectacular.

Rachel’s portraits force the viewer to focus on facial features, the visual element mainly used by her in compositions being form.

She makes an analysis of the atmosphere, imagines the content, uses light (as a key I could say) to highlight the subject. This way creates remarkable compositions, true artistic images that make us wonder if we are now or in the Victorian era.

The compositions of Rachel are dynamic. Where the dynamism is not obvious, there is an inner tension that creates an unstable balance that makes us feel an inner dynamism (the potency of the next moment) in a seemingly static composition.

In her compositions, the visual elements move in depth on different force vectors, in a continuous movement.

Here the well-defined shape of the human body (pattern) in connection with light obtains a new dimension, in the most subtle ways.

The color, where it is, replaces the gray tones just to become the center of interest of the composition. After that the eyes see the neutral gray tones, which makes us think we are dreaming with opened eyes.

Without the distracting colors, the images made by Rachel in refined shades of gray, communicate directly with the viewer. This way the photographer achieves nonverbal communication between viewer and the characters immortalized, thru the essence of pure aesthetics.

She uses a high light-dark contrast, in which some elements are strongly illuminated opposite the deep shadows, in addition to the low contrast with a soft representation, delicate lighting, obtaining in this manner intense artistic expressiveness.

From light to dark tones, Rachel also uses light to accentuate the textures of surfaces. Increasing the tactile dimensions and the depths, to highlight the characteristics of the subject.

The harmonies between tonality and intensity achieve the unity of Rachel’s compositions. The transcendence of color and time being their evocative result. The people met and photographed by Rachel become fascinating subjects in her compositions.

The portrait has new values, by sweetening the skin tones and emphasizing the facial features. More sensual shapes and tones appear, obtaining airy and bright images in some cases or mystery maybe even sinister in others.

The expressiveness of the characters is given by the dynamism, by the even dramatic theatrical movements we could say, caught in the full action, the inertia of their states is caught.

By enlarging the details and by moving the lens, Rachel realizes new abstractions and configurations. Thanks to it, structure and color are combined in a way that leads to images worthy of the name Fine art.

The compositions of Rachel impress with movement, strength, joy, drama, mystery or tension. They being true time capsules that, depending on the eye of the beholder, can be attributed on the time axis of any time event.

“Be nice to other people” – Rachel Mary Prout

Would you like to write for BAV? Or maybe you have an interesting story to share? Write to:

Federico Imperiale – I was rapidly seduced by photography

Federico’s works have been published in our Street Photography 2021 book.

by Lina Elle Sea

The original language of this article is English. If you read it in another language, it means it is an automatic translation.

BAV Street Photography 2021

How did you select the photographs for Bruxelles Art View?

The photographs I submitted are part of my ongoing body of work Subveil, started in 2017, where I portray the Los Angeles subway as a surreal underworld to reveal latent visual facets of an everyday urban experience.

I selected the three images I consider more representative of the focal themes of the project. The man on the escalator embodies the shifting in identity between individual and character: due to the strong shadow completely hiding the lineament of his face, he loses his identity and becomes an expression of the underworld.

The photograph of the man and the hat manifests the revelatory mechanism I pursued: the position of the hat on the suitcase’s handle, which visually overlaps on the man’s head where the hat is normally supposed to be, makes this image a symbol of the ambiguity I strive to capture.

The girl in the wagon is completely unified with the environment: she has lost her individuality and is transfigured in an urban version of the Black Madonna, a religious icon. I decided to shoot on pushed high-iso color film because the organic feeling and the enhanced grain texture strengthened the complementary relationship between direct and mediated vision. I often exploit visible grain or noise, highlighting the minimum physical units of the photographic image to pursue an intentional unveiling and visual embodiment of its artifactual illusory nature.

Can you tell us about your background and how you got into photography?

My interest in photography developed in parallel with my interest in cinema. I have been a musician since I was young and in 2009 I began a Bachelor in cinema to become a music composer for film.

During those years I was rapidly seduced by photography as an extraordinary expressive form which encounters less barriers than the verbal language while embodying a fundamental component of ambiguity, two characteristics that I previously came across in composing music.

I felt intrigued to dive deeper into it theoretically and practically. The crucial encounter happened in 2013 when I met renowned photographer Giovanni Chiaramonte as my professor during a Master in Cinema at IULM University in Milan. I had the privilege of getting enlightened by him on the life-long adventure of being a photographer. Photography inexorably became the connective tool between the outworld and my mind: a means of manifesting ideas and perception.

Federico Imperiale

I saw your work for Loulou, how did you get involved with the project? Can you tell us about the specificities of working as a unit still?

I got hired by both the producer and the director, after working with them in some of their previous projects and positively impressing them with my movie stills ability.

Motion picture stills is a peculiar field of photography: it requires a specific set of hard and soft skills related to properly working on a cinematographic set while also possessing knowledge and abilities typically related to other genres of commercial photography, such as sport, portrait and event photography. The most successful stills are always the ones capturing the essence of the movie in a single frame, beyond their technical or compositional complexity. In this role, I instantly found the perfect fit for my mindset: it brings together my predilection for subjects not posing for my camera with the necessity of producing intriguing narrative images. The possibility of capturing manifestations of a fictional world excellently marries with my personal inclination to a revelatory photography. I live the set similarly to the method acting approach: I get completely immersed in the universe of the movie and become a sort of ghost observing the characters rather than the actors. That puts me in a position more similar to a street photographer, even if movie stills are essentially publicity and marketing tools for the production company.

Your portraits often have an eerie feel to them, either because faces are somewhat hidden, or because you’re playing with lights and contrasts. Is the search for people’s identity or true self something you’re pursuing through your photography?

My work is centered on researching the interrelations between perceived and represented reality and my approach is based on the themes and perspective of conceptual and street photography. I want to portray spontaneous moments of Beauty together with the unconscious aspects of vision that emerge in the mind when experiencing it.

More than the true individual’s identity, I look for representing the subjective hidden aspects of experience, particularly focusing on exploring the interpretative processes of the beholder. The eeriness visually connects to the oniric aspect of experiencing the Real, evoking the inexorable mysterious essence of being which lays behind the conceptualization of the conscious mind and make the hermeneutical process necessary.

Can you tell us about an unexpected moment while street shooting?

More than a specific moment, I would like to underline a tendency I noticed in the past five years.

The main difficulty of shooting in the street is to capture the spontaneity of an event; in the past many people felt uncomfortable in being in the presence of a photographer, often freezing or walking away as soon as the photographer was spotted.

In recent years I have noticed instead that many people react to my presence by striking their best pose while faking to not noticing you. It might be a consequence of the new social perception of photography with the total preponderance of social media: they think they could become famous by being immortalized in a photo. While it makes it easier to shoot from a quantity point of view, it removes all the spontaneity and authenticity which are vital to the quality of great street photographs. I find myself more and more taking my best shots from far away or from a moving car.

I saw the striking images you took during the Los Feliz flea or the photos for Reckless Magazine. How do you choose events you attend or moments you want to be part of for your photography?

I got hired by the Los Feliz Flea market to cover their weekly event for a couple months in the summer of 2021. It was an interesting experience as, by being an open environment event, it was more similar to a street portrait job than a classic event coverage.

The photograph selected for Reckless Magazine’s show about the underground musical scene was taken at an hip hop concert I attended in 2017 in Burbank, California.

I often have a camera with me when going out and the rapper’s performance was so vivid I decided to take a few shots of him and his crew.

Lastly, what are some of your upcoming projects?

I definitely want to continue working as a unit still photographer; it is a stimulating and rewarding profession and I always enjoy the thrill of being on a movie set.

During the next year, I also plan to expand and conclude Subveil. I purchased one of the last batch of Fuji Superia 1600 for it, since this film is now out of production and I noticed through testing that pushing an 800 ISO film that far doesn’t give me satisfactory results in terms of consistency. The new photographs will be aimed to amplify the surreal aesthetic of the body of work, strengthening the pervasive and reflective experience for the viewers. The plan is to bring the body of work to a total of 36 images; this would make the project open to being published as a book while exhibiting in galleries.

For the exhibitions, I want to produce a limited version of metal-prints: the metallic surface will create a physical connection between the exhibition space and the subway environment the photographs refer to.

Would you like to write for BAV? Or maybe you have an interesting story to share? Write to:

Expo in Brussels – check photos from the successful exhibition and vernissage!

The Bruxelles Art Vue Expo took place at the g3artcontemporain gallery in October 2021.

There was quite some effort to make it happen, but it was worth each and every minute we – the participating artists and BAV team – have put into it! We had fun and got incredibly good feedback from the visitors!

We had wonderful audience at the vernissage, with around one hundred visitors!

Big thanks go to the participants of the expo, who helped with their talent, creativity and wonderful works, which we have proudly presented.

Expo participants:

Ars Cracovia
Juliana Chetrone
Helen-Maria Chrysikou
Noella Nachelput
Martin Oluwadiran
Paolo Parenti
Christophe Penninckx
Joanna Pęgier
Aleksandra Rowicka
Gunther Schweigert

The full catalog may be downloaded here:

BAV Expo October 2021 catalog


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Thank you again to everyone who made this Expo happen and see you next time!

You may also have a look to our free e-books here or purchase hardcover albums at our on-line bookshop here: BAV Bookshop.

Power of Color – new open call!

on the blog post cover a photo by Jean-Pierre Charbonnel

POWER OF COLOR – have YOUR WORKS published in a beautiful hardcover art album! It could be an explosion of colors, or a selective color, or a color as a powerful accent

We accept:

  • photography (macro and drone included)
  • paintings
  • drawings
  • digital art
  • sculptures

Apply for free before November the 10th, 2021. UPDATE!! deadline extended till 14/11.

Requirements: please send over maximum of 6 photos, not bigger than 10Mb each, ideally 300 dpi. Please put a title of your work in a file name, if you wish it to be printed at the edge of a photo.

Each book of Bruxelles Art Vue contains works of about 100 carefully selected artists, each of them receiving 2 dedicated pages. 

Our hardcover albums size is 22 x 30 cm.

On the photo above: Inga Falkowska – one of the artists published by BAV

Published so far:

Street Photography 2021
Human Body is Art 2021
BAV Limitless Nature 2021
Limitless Nature 2021

Application is very easy:

1) Fill in a preliminary application for the Power of Color 2021 edition. We will review your work.
2) If the artist is approved, they will be notified by end of November 2021.
3) After approval, you will need to pay a participation fee ranging from 35€ to 62€ check the details


The sooner you apply, the sooner you may be featured on our Instagram and Facebook feeds!


We don’t spam, we inform. Stay updated about upcoming calls, available free e-books, hardcover editions, and other interesting topics.

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Jean-Pierre Charbonnel: I am a lucky man because I had an artistic life.

Jean Pierre Charbonnel, a photographer published by Bruxelles Art Vue, opens a new exhibition “Voyages en littérature”, at the Médiathèque d’Uzerche (Limousin, France) from Saturday 23 of October till Saturday 27 of November.

The original language of this article is English. If you read it in another language, it means it is an automatic translation.

I am a lucky man because I had an artistic life.

I’m sixty seven years old, so it was fifty exciting years, first as a musician (I was a classical guitarist) and teacher and now as a photographer.

I’m a lucky man because I live in a beautiful country with great landscapes, it’s quite easy to have a great quality of live here, this country is the “Corrèze” in Limousin (France).

Jean-Pierre Charbonnel

I am lucky live with a beautiful family, my lovely wife and two marvelous kids. My daughter is a dressmaker and we presented exhibitions together. My son is a classical guitarist, of course I’m happy about that. He plays better than me which is a great joy because I was his first teacher !

Jean-Pierre’s daughter

I have three grandchildren, two boys, and adorable little girl, the last one, one year half old. The best side of life!

Few more words about the “Voyages en littérature” exhibition

It is the third time that I present it, the first time in 2016 in Tulle, the second in 2019 in Abbeville, and now in the “Mediathèque of Uzerche” Limousin, France, (23th of October to 27th of November). It includes from Utah, New York, Oman, Iceland, Sicilia, and more.

Every photo is completed by a text extract of a famous book. The authors are E. Abbey, J. Dos Passos, M. Proust, G de Maupassant, H. de Balzac, G. Sand, etc.

I tried to find correspondence between texts and pictures. Sometimes I began with the picture, and was looking for the good text. Another time, I loved the text and was looking for the good picture. It was very funny, I did so much research that I discover a lot of things. It was an infinite field of knowledge : exciting and so rich !

I took the pictures, of course, but, I decided to control all the manufacturing and I made the prints by my own : A big challenge with A2 and A3+ format, black and white or color !

As you can see I like to mix the genres, it’s the best way for always marvel about this incredible world.

JP Charbonnel pages in the BAV Limitless Nature 2021 edition

The best moments of your early artistic life?

Photography was always important in my life since I was ten years old. I received little Agfa camera as a gift. My eyes shone so bright that this moment is forever etched in me.

Music gave me so many great moments for myself, with my pupils and with the public.

I experienced the excitement of photo labs, the same thing today when I print an A2 photo. Slowly, it appears,  my heart beat fast, and I always hope the best result (very difficult to success !)

Tempete de sable 2 by JP Charbonnel

Deep questions with sharp answers:

When do you feel most connected with Universe ?

At the top of a big mountain.  This is the best place to feel the power of nature and how small we are, it’ s so beautiful, I’m just feel happy after a long way to reach the top.

What is a piece of art that changed your life?

The first time I heard the “Chaconne” composed by J.S. Bach for the violin but also played with a lute or a guitar, this time, it was a guitar. And I decided to become a guitarist for playing this masterpiece by myself. Oddly, I never played this piece in concert. It was something like a holy Grail!  But I’m very proud of my son who plays it very well. What a huge happiness!

What is something that no one or very few people know about you?

I think becoming a musician may have been a mistake, but don’t say that to anybody!! The fantasy is to believe that I could have been a better photographer than a musician

Who would play you in your bio movie, and what be its title?

François Civil, “The dreamer”. François Civil is very friendly, charmer, with a luminous character, sometimes awkward and deliciously naïve, everybody loves him.

The dreamer as a title, because it’s an open door on poetry, a universe where everything is possible without limits. Even extreme extravagances could be true, I like this idea.

What was the happiest and most inspiring day of your life

The birth of my two kids : I realized that the love of two people creates new beings who will be different.  I hope my wife and I have been able to make them autonomous and independent.

What is something that everybody loves but you can’t stand ?

The selfies : an horror, so many people don’t see around them, but they have to show that they were in  a place, absolutely,  I hate that !

What is your life’s big question ?

I’m not really interested to leave a trace but why this daily battle with so much agitation for nothing at the end ? ……… I’m an atheist, it’s not easy to be confident because it leads me toward nihilism. So art saved me. It’s the reason why I think that the artists are so important, very necessary in this world. It began whit the first women and men and it will never stop !

Describe your soul in 10 words 

Solitary, lack confidence but very determined, excessive, greedy for culture, still in doubt.

You can write 5 words note to a 10-years old you – what would it be?

Be yourself, don’t be afraid by the others, be passionate, go ahead and hang on!

Which living or dead artist would like to have dinner with and why?

Daniel Barenboim: He founded the West-Eastern Divan orchestra with young Arab and Israeli musicians, a true political act in an artistic way: Incredible and fantastic. I think he could have the Nobel Peace Prize! It’s very courageous and the results are exceptional. A huge humanist, with such people, humanity is great!

If you could travel in time, would you go to the past or future, and why?

I would go to the future, I would like to know if humanity will have been able to save the planet.

Les voiliers bis

If animals could talk for a day, to what animal would like to talk to?

Make the dialogue of the “Little Prince” of Saint Exupery with a fox.

What would your heaven or hell look like?

Heaven is like “Arches National Park” because I love so much this place. Hell: I don’ think of that, it doesn’t exist, end of the story!

Thank you Jean-Pierre for sharing your story!

BAV Team

Would you like to write for BAV? Or maybe you have an interesting story to share? Write to:

Remember to visit Bruxelles Art Vue Expo 18 – 31 October 2021!

Art is non-amputable – is that so?

Interview with Katarzyna Leszczyńska – Kaszuba

by Aneta Bobryk

The original language of this article in English. If you see this text in a different language it means, it is the automated Google translation.

When did you realize that art is part of you?

I don’t know … it just was – like arms, legs and head.

It grew, developed and finally is what it is. Non-amputable.

What inspires you?


What is your story?

I have always looked for the possibility of creative dropping what is in my head. The easiest way is to grab a pencil or paints. And that’s exactly what I did, with different frequencies and different effects.

The camera also accompanied me from my childhood, but of course for many years it was simply capturing important moments, and beautiful places. Just photos for an album. But it was satisfying so I always had a camera and took pictures.

The first thoughts about the composition of the picture or how to show what and how, the first read books on this subject and exploring the topic appeared only in the late 90’s.

Then, for quite a long time, my photography revolved around sports topics, more specifically around caves. Cave climbing as well as rock and mountain climbing is another great passion of mine.

What do you feel when you create?

It depends on whether the effects are satisfactory.

Once upon a time I fought till my end for an effect that would satisfy me – it’s better not to speak out loud what feelings accompany such actions!

Today I learned to let go. I already know that sometimes you have to give yourself some time and come back with a different attitude, a fresh mind, a new way to touch the subject.

Artist: necessary evil or incomprehensible man?

Artist is one of the concepts that are difficult to define. Just like beauty or ugliness. Everyone will have a definition. If I had to create my own, it would include the following phrases:

Creator of the statement.

Eternal seeker, reality interpreter, sensorist.

Recipient and giver of sensations.

If you had a taste for happiness what would it be?

Sweet and salty! And green. And blue.

Which does not translate into creativity at all … I think bitter and black dominate there. Sometimes aggressive red. I like topics that stick under my nails – they are not cute …

Does your talent scare you sometimes? If so, why and what is it about?

I am highly critical of myself and my work.

For many years, I thought that it was just hard work and everyone can work out to a good level. It changed a bit during my studies (the possibility of comparing myself with others) and since I run ceramics workshops and I can observe how it looks with others.

Recently I learned what it means to stop thinking in pictures.

I always considered thinking in pictures, seeing ready-made pictures in my head as a natural thing. Until the moment when, as a result of exhaustion, I lost this ability for a while…. it was really scary! Creativity at the zero level and the inability to make sense out of yourself.

Katarzyna Leszczyńska Kaszuba

Do you create in absolute silence or on the contrary?

I like to start in silence. So that there is room for thought and focus.

But when I turn off – nothing can stop me.

What supports your creative process? Is it so, for example, during the day, you suddenly have a flash and you can get down to the realization as soon as possible or do you approach your work calmly?

Coffee and cigarettes. Lots of coffee and lots of cigarettes!

The best ideas come to my mind just before going to sleep. Then they go to the notebook next to the bed. They mature there, grow into details – at the same time I gather the necessary materials. Props for photography, sculptures or ceramics, clay, glazes, etc.

When it comes to creative photography or sculpture, it is simply difficult to implement ideas right away. Usually it requires the mentioned preparations

But of course, during a trip with the camera, it happens that an idea appears under the influence of the existing situation and is immediately possible! Alternatively, a photographic base for graphic games with the obtained image.

If the art you create absorbs you completely or can you divide time into everything and everyone?

Absorbs! I have a problem with time sharing.

What are you afraid of?

No ideas! Boredom. Stagnation. People who lie.

What everyone loves and you can’t stand?

The most difficult question of all!

I don’t know what everyone loves… Maybe kitsch? Kamp? Although today kitsch in art often becomes a conscious choice and a way of artistic expression. In this sense, I respect.

So, cannot art be amputated and is it a part of us who lives and dies with us?

Aneta Bobryk

Would you like to write for BAV? Or maybe you have an interesting story to share? Write to:

Remember to visit Bruxelles Art Vue Expo 18 – 31 October 2021!

Ida Heylighen: “Art is made to stand out!”

by Madalina Dragos

the original language of the article is English

“Colorful art steals the show – as it should. Art is made to stand out – and that’s what I like about it. My house is, just as my life, a showroom!”

These are the words of the Belgian artist Ida Heylighen, whom I present to you here, through her thoughts about art and its impact on her life.

Q: Back in time, you’ve been told that “you’re not creative enough,” my question to you is: How did you felt then and how do you feel now!?

When I was told to drop out of art school, I felt devastated. All my life I’ve been saying that I want to pursue an art career and be told I can’t, it was heartbreaking. I felt knocked down for a longer period. I skipped classes, stopped meeting friends, … Luckily I had just met my boyfriend (who is now my husband), he convinced me to try to follow my dreams.

Q: Now you are all-round art teacher, can you tell us what it means to be a teacher for you ” the artist”!?

My boyfriend is the one that came up with the art teacher-idea. And I’m still thankful for that. It was the best decision I’ve ever made as I love (!) being a teacher. My pupils inspire me every day, they question everything. I teach   teenagers who do not want to be an artist, they study sports, languages and/or science. Nothing artsy at all. But it’s them, questioning me and the (“non-existing”) importance of art that triggers me to be better. To teach them that art does matter to everyone!

Q: What is inspiring you during the creative process and to create?

In my opinion, I need the social interaction of my work as a teacher to grow as an artist. If I locked myself away in my atelier to paint all day, I would never feel the same or get triggered by other people and their insights.

I’m inspired by modern society, mostly by social media at the moment. It never ceases to amaze me. The technology itself, but especially the fact that people can (and will be) influenced by it. A couple of people I know are ‘influencers’, they create and post pictures of a luxurious lifestyle. A lifestyle they don’t really have – just to sell products.

Our society is materialistic, I’m too, but portraying yourself falsely takes it too far in my eyes. One of influencers I follow myself also, did fall in a depression and “burn-out” due to the pressure of social media. The life she displayed wasn’t her own, and she felt break down because she couldn’t live up to it..

Q: I think your art is amazing! And from what I’ve seen, with an expressionist palette, an abstractionist synthesis, pop-art roots, a sense of surrealism, your art is very deep and modern! Which of those faces of your art characterizes you the most as an artist!?

My art shows abstract people/figures with one (or more) realistic eyes – because no matter how hard you try, you can never fully hide your true self. Not online and not in real life.

I feel like the surrealism is my Belgian roots speaking, as Magritte is one of the most famous Belgian artists ever. I love pop-art for its meaning and bright colors – it’s really expressive. But I, myself, always describe my work as abstract with a small hint to realism. I’m not too confident about putting a label on my art, as I create without thinking through the style. Painting, for me, is about clearing my head. It’s putting all my thoughts and feelings onto canvas. For that I really (!!) appreciate your definition of my style – as I could never say something like that about my paintings myself. But if I had to choose, I’d pick expressionism. I love hearing other people interpretations of my art – as art should speak different to each one of us.

Ida’s publication in BAV’s Human Body is Art

Q: Looking back in art’s history do you believe that it is hard to be an artist or not and why!? 

Nowadays everyone can display their work on the internet, for everyone to see. But that makes it hard too. Millions of artists try to sell and show their work on social media or on their own website, but to reach the right people isn’t easy. Everyone with a brush (or laptop, or …) can call themselves an artist and who are we to debate it? 

In my opinion it’s the same level of difficult to be an artist now and/or in the past. The only true difference is that everyone may be an artist, despite race or gender.

­Q: What is the book and/or painting that changed your life?

When I read ‘Life doesn’t frighten me’ by Maya Angelou, accompanied with paintings of Basquiat, it truly touched me. The poems are ’simple’ but moving, and the paintings… The paintings fit perfect. Basquiat is one of my favorite artists of all time. He catches so much feelings in one painting. He amazes me every time.

It’s Basquiat who showed me that art doesn’t has to be ‘perfect’ as long as it shows emotions. I hope that my art does that as well – in some way.

Q: Do you want to be the muse of an artist whether if he is alive or dead?

I’m a big fan of old rock bands such as Guns ’n Roses, The Doors, Pink Floyd, … If I could be one their muses, I’d be honored. I’d rather be the muse of a band than a muse to a painter, as I’d love to get free tickets to a concert!

Q: Do you have a pet?

I have two dogs, a Podenco (rescued from Spain) and an Italian greyhound.

Q:What color do you like?

My house is made of concrete and black steel, it’s really minimalistic. There are no other colors inside, except for a golden kitchen, and the art. I like muted tones like beige, black and white but in art I like bold and bright colors. 

“Art is made to stand out!” – and that’s what I like about it. My house is, just as my life, a showroom. Colorful art steals the show – as it should!

Visual analysisby Madalina Dragos.

Ida’s favorite subjects are compositions with characters and genre painting, or compositions in that appears animals . The character painted, the most, by Ida is the “woman” presented in a reversed vision from the inside to the outside catching the viewer into the middle of all the emotions through the “eye” of the subject!

The compositions of Ida have a strong emotional dynamism thru the fact that the characters have suggestive forces, by synthesizing all the forms, she thus annihilates the realism inviting in the inner world painted by her. I quote Ida: “I paint women, mostly abstract but with realistic eye, because we are not things. Women are strong and should be treated as such. Everyone should look us in the eye and acknowledge that are as important as men.

Ida, thru her compositions let the viewer to imagine the continuation of the characters’ bodies outside the plastic space. In this way the viewer becomes part of the painted world.

The “full-empty” ratio it is used to compensate for the lack of the perspective with a preponderance of a “full”. There where isn’t a domination of the “full”, Ida approaches a pictoriality in the backgrounds through by wide, chromatically vibrated brushstrokes or by graphic overlays. The lines used by Ida are firm, mostly wavy, which join together each other causing shapes that can be imagined by the viewer, the latter do not necessarily coincide with the artist’s intention. Through the modulated line, wavy or not, which is repeated rhythmically in the vertical or spiral direction, which has become a personal way of Ida to create accents, she highlights the essential by making visible the tension movements inside the characters painted by her.

The details are small, the forms simplified until to their synthesis, but expressive and full of suggestions, creating around them personal symbols, individualizing the existing characters in the artist’s compositions.

Ida has a bright color palette, using spectral colors instead of local colors. She spreads the color on large surfaces, in flat spots, alternating with pictorial details in which the brush strokes are intertwined.

Ida’s colors do not imitate reality, they are symbolic, with chromatic contrasts but also with refined accords. With a strong emotional impact, the colors used by Ida oscillate between warm and cold.

With her palette and the way she uses all the elements of plastic language, Ida creates symbols through which she expresses her ideas and feelings.

The achromatism appears in her compositions to give depth, in the background or as a center of interest, emphasizing deep meanings of the emotions of the painted characters, which the viewer is invited to discover!

Ida has in her composition intense chromatic contrasts, reminiscent of expressionists, along with a surreal feeling by creating symbols and placing in the same plastic space some elements from nature. She is attracted to ideas and symbols, uses all the elements of plastic language in this sense, transforms the flat surface into the pictorial through graphic overlays, makes background games, synthesizes to abstraction, individualizes and highlights certain characteristics of the painted characters.

Her characters have expressive poses, with roots in the imaginative, placed centrally or not, can sometimes be melancholic, dramatic or relentless.

With her spontaneous and forceful brush strokes, Ida create in the same time an atmosphere of inner agitation but also of meditative silence.

The linear rhythm becomes very dynamic, where the difference is to a greater extent in favor of the empty space, creating an atmosphere of restlessness thru movement.

We cannot overlook the single eye that covers a large part of the head at some of the characters painted by Ida and the symbolism of this. The absorption of the being by the external world and a vigilance always directed towards the outside, it almost leaves the body heading towards the object of perception.

Metaphorically, the eyes painted by Ida represent the desire in some cases, but also the universe or the inner world in other cases of the characters that appear in her compositions.

Would you like to write for BAV? Or maybe you have an interesting story to share? Write to:

Remember to visit Bruxelles Art Vue Expo 18 – 31 October 2021!

Expo 18 – 31, October 2021

Bruxelles Art Vue is very proud to announce that it’s very first Expo will be held in Brussels, 18 – 31 of October 2021.

So far BAV focused on publishing art albums, and now we can finally start exhibiting our best artists!

In July, we have published an open call and from all the submitted entries, nine wonderful artists have been chosen:

– Ars Cracovia gallery
– Juliana Chetrone
– Helen-Maria Chrysikou
– Noëlla Nechelput
– Martin Oluwadiran
– Paolo Parenti
– Christophe Penninckx
– Joanna Pęgier
– Gunther Schweigert

BAV Expo October 2021 catalog


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The venue is G3 art contemporain gallery, Rue de la Madeline 51, 1000 Brussels.

Dates of Expo events to mark in your calendar:

Thursday, October the 21st, vernissage 19h – 21h , violin concert by Maja Maklakiewicz at 20h
Sunday, October the 24th, evening at the Expo 18h – 20h
Thursday, October the 28th finissage 19h – 21h

Facebook event link: Vernissage BAV Expo on Facebook

Is an artist always a dreamer or a hard-standing person, the artist Petra Stefankova tries to answer.

Aneta Bobryk speaks to Petra Stefankova

The original language of this article is English.

What is your story?

For 20 years I have been a digital artist. My characters have been funky and simple. I started as a vector graphic designer and illustrator designing posters, logos and brochures. Later on, I worked on magazine editorial and advertising illustration commissions for clients in Italy, the UK and the USA.

Petra Stefankowa

Petra published her works in Bruxelles Art Vue Human Body is Art 2021 and Limitless Nature 2021 editions.

In the meantime, I was exploring automatic drawing as a technique for relaxation. They were just doodles to me, nothing much. I usually sketched on small sheets of paper, then larger and larger ones. My work was very abstract with some characters, heads, eyes and other figurative elements in it. So for the higher aesthetics purpose, I created 3D computer models of these drawings and suddenly became quite well-known for this type of work. It was more than 10 years ago.

Another stage was pure line work with black markers. These were just strange and funny characters connected by a single line all over the artwork. I used the style in a children’s book too and led a few workshops with kids thanks to the simplicity.

After many years of doing creative artwork, I started to explore acrylic painting. It was not an easy process, I tested out gouache, oils, watercolors too. Finally, I arrived at a stage, when my art feels ready for people to appreciate it more and more. And it actually works!

BAV Human Body is Art 2021

When did you realized art its part of you?

Art is always part of my life – by day or night.

How your career unfolded?

I studied graphic design, film and TV graphics in Bratislava and Prague, then started to focus more on illustration and digital art. My previous clients include HR Magazine, Popular Mechanics, Future Music, Computer Arts, The Economist, The Guardian, Petplan magazine, Orange, Microsoft Games Studios and others. As a designer, I also collaborated on an animated title sequence for the Hollywood film Nanny McPhee 2 with London based Voodoodog Animation studio. My work has been published in books, and exhibited all around the world.

When do you feel most connected with Universe?

Sometimes I meditate by the computer browsing the internet and imagine fantastic events to happen in my professional life. Later they tend to materialize in reality. Two examples – I always dreamed of being presented on national television news and there you go, I was interviewed for the main TV news a few months ago. I also wished hard to have the opportunity to be published by the Guardian newspaper in the UK, and I was given a chance by the art director in 2018.

BAV Limitless Nature 2021

How your work comments on current social or political issues?

As an illustrator, I usually respond to a variety of briefs created by writers and art directors. Some of my illustrations were created around environmental themes. I even wrote and illustrated a children’s book about a boy who saved a sea whale. I don’t illustrate or comment on politics, but I am interested in the position of women in society and give them major credit in my fine art too. I wrote more about my visual art response to global issues in my article on the blog of the Royal Society of Arts in London.

What is something that no one or very few people know about you?

When I was very young, I trained karate, I was a tennis player and I also played the piano.

What is your life’s big question?

I invested a lot of energy into my artistic development and freelance career, so the biggest question is always my life stability. I have a strong vision of being a full-time artist and follow my dreams.

So is an artist a dreamer or a tough figure with a fragile soul? Is art a better part of the artist’s soul and acts as a guide for the crowd?
I hope that our artist Petra led you to the answer with her interview and works.

Visit Petra’s website:

Would you like to write for BAV? Or maybe you have an interesting story to share? Write to:

Remember to visit Bruxelles Art Vue Expo 18 – 31 October 2021!