NEW YORK — January 16, 2020 — Tiago Azevedo, the acclaimed pop surrealist painter whose aesthetic has been signaled out for its utter uniqueness and originality, will bring his “Fairy tales” collection to U.S. audiences after a global exhibition tour in 2019. Inspired by the original version of the Brothers Grimm Fairy tales, the collection includes 10 paintings of beloved characters from fables throughout the last 100 years. Azevedo will showcase the series in a soon-to-be-announced U.S. exhibition.
“I have always been passionate about fairytales and these are deeply rooted in German Folklore,” said the artist. “During my stay in Germany I became immersed in its culture and felt an immense impulse to bring my version of these characters into life.”
Included in the collection are portraits of Cinderella, The Frog Princess, Sleeping Beauty, Mother Holle (Two Sisters), The Six Swans (the sixth), Mary’s Child (the praying virgin), The Hares Bride (the hare), Snow White, Rapunzel and Red Riding Hood. “Each of these characters came to be purely by subconscious intuition instead of a conscious choice,” Azevedo said. “Usually, my painting process begins with an image that forms in my mind and that then my job is to translate it onto the canvas.”
The artist used his own childhood as inspiration for the series.
“I was born on the Azores islands where fairy tales have long been used to educate children,” he said. “Those mystical and fantastic landscapes make it easier for the mind to travel to the fantasy realm. Fairy tales are a part of my subconscious.”
Of course, interpreting the characters through his own aesthetic — rich, luscious colors and artistically manipulated facial features — is one of the signatures of his work.
“What is different in this series is the portrayal of the darker, juicier and original version of fairy tales we are familiar with,” the artist said. “I wanted to go to the root and origin of these fairy tales and found in the Brothers Grimm book that they had a much darker meaning and were meant to impute moral and social values in the reader.”
Azevedo published a book of the images and launched a product line to “make it possible for everyone to have printed versions of their favorite fairy tale characters at home.”
The artist’s previous collections — “Religion” and “Historical Figures” – were critical hits in the pop surrealist art community, and greatly expanded his fan base. “My audience tends to be very diversified,” Azevedo says. “It consists mainly of people who love the fantastic, but as almost all my paintings are portraits, sometimes people simply fall in love with the way the painted figure looks at them, as if they were talking to them, and curiously these are the people who often purchase my originals simply because they fell in love with the subject.”
“Painting is a way to say everything I want, everything that fascinates and inspires me in one single image,” he says. “I have an idea of a particular subject, then comes a blurred image on my mind that I convert into a quick sketch to capture how I want it to be, this is the most creative part, then when it is time to paint, that turns out to be a sequence of technical steps that end in a finished canvas. It is a laborious process with a lot of attention to detail, expression and texture.”
“It is a great satisfaction to see such a large number of people understanding the concept behind what I create, it makes me feel like my mission of stimulating emotions within people has been fulfilled,” the artist says.