JOS KIVITS

Jos Kivits, painter of magnificent Neo-Classical Romantic landscapes and sumptuous still life’s in the manner of sixteenth and seventeenth century Dutch and Flemish masters. Born in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, September 1945, Jos ( Christened, Jozef, Wilhelmus, Henrikus, Cornelis. ) was the youngest of five children, a descendant of a well established Dutch family, the roots of which can be traced back to the early thirteenth century. Needing to escape the harsh winters of Europe, Jos immigrated to New Zealand in 1973 where his life as a professional artist can be said to have truly begun. With the support of local gallery owners and art lovers alike which saw him as a much desired addition to the local scene, Jos was able to carve out a living and raise a family at the same time as fulfilling his creative ambitions, which sadly cannot be said for all artists in the professional realm. In late 1986, along with his wife Lydia and their four children, Jos moved to Australia; first establishing a reputable name in Sydney before heading further north in 2004 to settle in Queensland where he now enjoys a much quieter life in semi-retirement plotting around his small farm, tending to his vineyard and taking in the inspiration found right outside his window. Despite early leanings towards becoming an industrial-chemist, architectural draughtsman, textile merchant, and even a brief desire to enter the world of religious theology, art was his true calling and Jos simply could not ignore it. Having shown an early interest in the subject, he took serious lessons at the age of 10 and completed his first oil painting at age 12. A student at the Dutch “Kunstnijverheid” school in Eindhoven in the 1960’s Jos continued his indepth studies throughout the 1970’s and 1980’s under the tutelage of renowned Dutch artist Cornelis Le-Mair. This association led to Jos receiving the highly coveted diploma of “Master Artist in Still Life” in 1989 from the Academy of Fine Arts , Antwerp, Belgium. Yet it was already during his formative years, by his own initiative, that Jos delved into the research of the Dutch Old Masters. A particular technique he admired - originally developed by the Van Eyck brothers in the 15th century - involved the application of successive oil glaze between layers of paint giving incredible depth to the finished work. An arduous, not to mention physically demanding technique, Jos has used this painting style to absolute perfection in many of his still-life compositions. During this time consuming process, the Artist completely repaints a scene four, five or sometimes even six times which understandably makes Jos’s annual output of detailed still-life very limited. In addition, his fascination with history and antiques led him to hunt down and acquire numerous authentic pieces to use as props which those with a serious eye will identify in the subtle detail of his works; from the design pattern of a Persian underlay rug to the provenance of a pewter decanter, his works are a virtual museum; and unlike many artists in the modern as well historical art world, all his compositions are created using hand to eye - without the use of mechanical aids or optics and at times coming only from his mind's imagination. A lifetime of training, study, experience and the creation of exquisite masterpieces has earned Jos an international reputation. His works can be found hanging in public and private collections in Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Japan, North and South America, the United Kingdom, several European Countries and also South Africa.