Artist of the Month – Marie-Louise Landén
Colors and houses to make people Happy
After working sales for 15 years at one of Sweden’s largest phone companies, Marie-Louise Landén has done a complete 180 and has traded her desk and computer for a yoga mat and paint palette. Today she is a trained and certified yoga instructor and an artist trying to make her ends meet. Looking at the lines, colors and dynamics of her work, you can see she takes inspiration from artists like the famous Huntertwasser. You can find her online portfolio and some info about her on her website .
- When did you know you wanted to become an artist?
I don’t know really, I’ve always painted. I took a watercolor course in high school and I guess that’s when I started to take art a little more seriously. Then I did a lot of art in my spare time and finally when I was 35 I went to an art school.
- Are you doing anything else or is art your only gig right now?
I teach yoga as well. So the truth is that when I become my own boss with yoga, there was also more time for art and exhibits. So now it’s about 50/50 yoga and art.
- There’s a lot of color and buildings in your art, how did you develop that style?
It’s been a slow and unconscious effort. I haven’t said to myself “oh it needs to look like this”, but the thing with houses – that’s always been something special. When I started out, I knew I wanted to do houses that would make people feel good when they look at it. Today, when you build a house, it has to be square shaped, black or gray, it’s the trend now and I’m trying to do the opposite. I love colors and I think we need colors in our life.
- Why do you believe art is important in our lives?
It’s culture, it’s part of our culture and it’s needed. Not this mechanical culture all the time, we need something else as well. Film, music, I feel it’s stuff that helps us live better and feel better in general. We need culture and I think many others feel as well, I mean there’s so much money that’s put into culture. Imagine if there wasn’t anything on the walls, it would be boring. You may not notice it at first but subconsciously I think we do, and that makes us happier.
- So then which artists inspire you the most for what you’re doing?
First and foremost, Paul Klee. He was a Bauhaus artist. Also Hundertwasser, he was really into buildings and shapes and stuff. Klee had a great imagination and loved to use colors. Hundertwasser did houses as well, both art but also real houses. He was an architect and believed in creating houses that people would feel good living in. He also had this idea that building a house had to be natural. Looking at the surroundings, listening to nature and seeing the bigger picture and I share a lot of those same ideas. He built a couple of churches too but people said “no no, a church isn’t supposed to look like that”, he said “why not?” and now they’re really popular tourist attractions. I would say those are my two main inspirations.