Helena Buckinx Paintings

"It is like an alternative to her diary to her. She draws what she lives and what she dreams of..."


Helena Buckinx (°1970, in Schoten near Antwerp) makes her first painting at the age of 16 on a summer holiday. With some old gouache paint and brushes, which belonged to her mother, she makes this painting on canvas. From then onwards she paints during every school holiday. It is like an alternative to her diary to her. She draws what she lives and what she dreams of...

After two years she gets a set of oil colours from her father. This is the real start. Genuine, vivid colours that are there to last on the canvas unlike the gouache that fades away after a couple of years.

Through the use of oil colours, Helena's love for true colours is even more characterized in her art work. 

Her paintings show a set of naïve-painted figures in an almost surreal world. A world where the sky is too blue and the grass too green to be true. It's her dream world. The change of gouache to oil does not influence the main subjects. Her paintings are still like a diary to her. One might recognize her in the main character of her paintings. However these are not to be considered as a set of self portraits, but as portrait of her feelings. In her native language, Dutch, she refers to it as 'gevoelsportretten' as opposed to 'zelfportretten'. 

Next to the figurative paintings, Helena also goes abstract from time to time. Although she considers this work much less personal than her figurative work, she also enjoys to work with colours only. Colours rule! 

"When I paint, I do not need to see the image in front of me. It is all in my head and in my heart. What I do need while I paint, is to be in the right mood. And good mood equals good music! 

My taste in music is quite eclectic. I've been a Johnny Cash, Beatles and ABBA fan for as long as I can remember. And either they or Wings, Tindersticks, Oasis, Boudewijn de Groot, Peter Gabriel, Simon and Garfunkel, Jean-Jacques Goldman, Denny Laine, Leonard Cohen, Franz Ferdinand, ... are my companions through my work. 

Sometimes a certain song can inspire me for a new painting. Like the beautiful Dutch song, 'Pastorale' by Liesbeth List and Ramses Shaffy, which talks about the impossible love of a woman for the mighty sun."