Romanian artist Nelu Gradeanu has studied monumental painting and specializes in religious art and restoration. And while his paintings of Romanian churches, great religious subjects and restored ancient icons are indeed mesmerizing, his abstract landscapes and colorful flowers are also remarkably special.
In this first painting, taken from his “Landscapes” collection, you can make out a steel blue body of water stretching out toward an equally chilling, stark sky.
Like paint etched on glass, Nelu is able to recreate an icy reflection of both lake and sky mirrored by the glaring white of a winter sun. In the background, dark rocks converge together in secrecy, while in the foreground remnants of a fiery autumn—dry reeds and weeds—bend away from a rather bleak scene.
I find Autumn Nostalgia below to be somewhat romantic, and yes, nostalgic. Perhaps it is the woman in the flowing skirt toting a delicate red umbrella and bold hat that intrigues me most. Most likely, it is the fact that on this fall day, with leaves crunching loudly underfoot, she walks alone as if contemplating not only the demise of fall, but that of another season—her life.
Still waters cannot calm her racing mind as she chooses whether or not to float away on a cheery blue boat toward happier adventures. Alas, we cannot see her facial expression to make out what is really on her mind, hidden as it is beneath hat and shadow.
Peonies, below, brings to mind childhood memories when sticky buds would burst forth into full-flowered blossoms nearly overnight, thickening the air with their strong perfume and multiplying so quickly that the garden would quickly become a sea of glamorous fuchsia.
What a beautiful transition, and it is fully evident in this painting! Rich in luxurious petals dripping in purple, red and pink, these peonies are mysterious and alluring against a scarlet, blackened backdrop.
Nelu’s website is full of many more wonderful paintings and beautiful flowers galore, so stop on by today and take a look through the rest of his painted garden!
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