The Art of Destruction Within Nicola Samori’s Artworks and Its Influence on Mine

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The theme I chose for my artworks for the grade 11 syllabus was “Extraordinary, ordinary”. I had varies subthemes I wanted to explore such as extraordinary love, which is where I wanted to show love without boundaries and extraordinary women, which is where I wanted to create artwork to praise women all over the world but stuck with “Extraordinary style, extraordinary people”. This subtheme is one where I explore the extraordinary within ordinary people. Such as the human emotion, biological makeup, appearance or qualities. I was interested with this because I was fascinated with how much we vary from each other and I wanted to find a style/way in which I could highlight those aspects.

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Nicola Samori was the artist to heavily influence my works and even the process of creating it. Samori was obsessed with “the art of destruction” which was the bases of my art style. I was inspired by the smouldering intensity of his figurative work and impressed by his dedication to preserve antiquated styles and themes within his paintings. He had a certain moody and atmospheric element to his work which created a sense of mystery, I wanted to achieve that type of mystery within my work.

Nicola Samori first painted the paintings using oil paints in a baroque style and focused heavily on making the subject really realistic. This would work in his favour as the subjects of the artworks were much distorted and therefore making the viewer uncomfortable. He would then destroy the paintings at specific parts, usually the face of the subject, using wax or even cutting in the canvas. In figure 1.1, we see that the face of the man had been destroyed using wax to create the effect of his face being melted. This inspired me to use the “art of destruction” in my artworks, however instead of destroying the artwork as a whole I destroyed the canvas on which the painting was created as seen in figure 1.2. The first canvas I did my first artwork on was already destroyed as there was glue on the canvas that could not go out and it started coming through the paint as seen in figure 1.3. I continued this form of destruction by cutting the canvas using a campus, rubbing it in grass and dirt, and hitting it onto varies objects to get dents and distressed mood within the canvas.

Nicola Samori also preserved the baroque style and I wanted to keep that sense of realism in my artworks as well. I used watered down acrylic and applied in in layers and instead of creating a baroque feel to the painting I created a Renaissance feel within the artwork. This can be seen in my comparison between my first artwork and a study drawing by Michelangelo in figure 1.4.

Nicola Samori did not only use one colour within his artworks but he used cold colours to create the moody and mysterious atmosphere within his paintings, I however decided to convey a certain message through the monochrome use of colour. The colour used to create the artwork was specific to the emotion portrayed in the various portraits. In the first artwork, figure 1.3, the subject appears to be sad or depressed and in some cultures the colour red is connect to idea of danger. In the second artwork, figure 1.5, the colours used is green and green is considered to be situated with peace and harmony and associated with safety therefore the subject of the painting appears to be smiling/at peace. The third artwork, figure 1.6, the subject appeared to me consumed by anger, the colour blue is known to be the colour of mourning in Korea and is associated with lower and the conscious mind which links to the idea that one’s thoughts could be linked to the anger experienced.


The subject and style of the artwork of my works were heavily influenced by Agata Wierzbicka. She observes people in the streets and in various situations and this is reflected in her illustrations. She enjoys drawing ordinary people in ordinary situations, travellers and people at the beach. I felt like this examples of subjects tied in perfectly with the extraordinary, ordinary people theme.

I tried to recreate the idea of capturing people in their average situations but failed so I rather decided to capture people expressing their natural basic emotions and finding the extraordinary not within the situation but rather in the emotion.

The most influential parts of her works on mine is the fact that she doesn’t finish her artwork, as seen in figure1.8, we doesn’t paint specific parts of the artwork which I’m absolutely fascinated about. In figure 1.7, she leaves out the hair of her subjects and if you look at the three artworks I did, you’ll be able to see that influence as I too do nog paint the hair. This could make the viewer uneasy as there is a part of the subject is gone. For me this ties into my theme of emotions because even though the subject appears to be smiling, physically and metaphorically, there is a piece of her missing.

Most of the artworks I didn’t after this series was also done in this incomplete manner as I believe that most of my artworks are only complete if they are incomplete as this gives the viewer the opportunity to think about what they would’ve done with that specific part of the artwork.

My favourite thing about Agata Wierzbicka’s artworks is how simply she works and her dynamic sketchy lines and pastel colours. She also mixes her painting and drawing together, she creates her paintings using acrylic and her outlines are done with pencil. I too used acrylic for most of my paintings and did an outline of the forms that were not painted were done in pencil. The difference between my works and Agata Wierzbicka’s artworks is that I used watered down acrylic where as Wierzbicka used acrylic in the traditional sense. I also used pencil to create detail within the artwork.

In conclusion, both artist played a very major role in influencing my art style and technique. Nicola Samori taught me about the art of destructions and the beauty behind it. Samori also reminded me about the dark beauty behind the Baroque paining’s and the heavy impact realism has in such paintings as it invokes a response within the viewer. Samori also informed me that colour plays a major part in the atmosphere of an artwork. Agata Wierzbicka heavily influenced my subject and situation in which the artwork was set, it helped me further explore the theme of extraordinary, ordinary people and it gave me the idea for the artworks I did. She allowed me to further explore a medium in which I was familiar with but not actually mastered. She also showed me that an artwork doesn’t necessarily need to be complete in order for it to be an artwork. All round these two artist help me create the beautiful artworks using several of their methods.

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