#AnInterview. Ramonn Vieitez is a self-taught painter, who often paints male characters in staged portraits, building often solitary characters blending in with the environment around them. His works intertwine urban and mythological themes in dramatic scenes sometimes violent and rich in dreamlike symbolic meaning.
KB: If I understand correctly, you are self-taught. How was this process?
Ramonn: Nine years ago I set myself a challenge, I had the desire to be an illustrator, and for that I decided to try out all possible materials in my power to work with illustration, I went through pencils, makers, pastel, ink … until I got the oil paint, then I gave up on everything else.
The oil paint for me was (and still is) a complex and challenging medium, being able to unravel it became extremely pleasurable, I began to read more about techniques and to study more about painting.
With each painting I could clearly see evolution and feel pleasure in the process and see results. I had some moments of frustration, of course, but the return was bigger, and here I am until today.
KB: Where do you draw ideas from when it comes to your work?
Ramonn: My ideas come like a flash, something that I see, read or listen and that arouses some interest. From that moment on the ideas arise, it is a very organic, a natural process. The important thing is to always walk with something to register, just as the idea arises it goes away fast, so I always have a notebook to write them down, and from these notes I make a selection, some I develop fast, others never leave the paper.
KB: There is something dreamlike or maybe nightmarish about your work. What are your actual dreams like?
Ramonn: Since my childhood my dreams are mostly nightmares, I cannot explain the reason, but even my good dreams walk in the specter of a nightmare, I got used to it.
KB: What is your favorite medium to work with and why?
Ramonn: Oil colors. From the beginning, oil is my favorite medium because it is always challenging, each painting is a new level, it is a medium that always surprises. Sometimes it’s annoying, sometimes I want to throw everything away, but all works out in the end.
KB: You often choose to publish your work in actual printed material, like zines, books etc. How important do you think this still is?
Ramonn: Having printed material is important for a career, it is something still highly valued in Brazil, so whenever I make an exhibition I try to have a record of it. But more than being important to my career, to me having printed material is more about pleasure, it’s like a feeling when you’re a child and you get that toy you’ve always wanted, it’s this feeling that I always look for. But of course they complement each other.
KB: What would you like to do next? Are you working on something specific?
Ramonn: I’m currently developing works that I started in a residency that I did in Quito at “No Lugar”. Back there in Ecuador I found some old pictures of forests that were very striking and I began to make some paintings based on them.
In addition, I am trying to make sculptural objects with different materials, like dry ink.
Using dry ink to make sculpture is interesting because despite being something else, it is also painting, it is to blend, combine colors … it is a good experience to challenge myself again with other mediums.