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One artist’s worldy inspiration
SIMÕES SAYS: Noted Brazilian painter shows work in Cobble Hill

Brazilian watercolourist Claudia Simões speaks softly about hard convictions toward her vibrant, natural images.

"For me the world is difficult but art makes you happy and makes your heart warm," she says in a gentle Portuguese accent.

The noted painter showed work recently at Cooble Hill home of friend Tom Miranda during a stopover en route to her home in São Paulo.

Simões seemed apologetic about never having time to paint West Coast images to complement scenes of the Amazon and other regions of her homeland.

"This is a very beautiful country and I’d love to paint here and show other painters", she says.

But the former nuclear physicist is calculated about the painting process and what it conveys." To paint different cultures and religions, I need to go there, and breathe the air and eat the food, then, will all these things inside me, I start to paint".

Her pieces range from azure birds to sweeping landscapes across verdant rivers.

Some images are reminiscent of British watercolor master Joseph Mallord Willian Tuner.

"I ‘m like an ambassador showing people other countries"

Simões has showing work around the world while gathering ideas for the 50 or so pieces she creates each year.

"Some I send an afternoon on, others take three months", she says. "It depends on how I feel inside and the subject".

She’s especially fond of displaying water and sky properly using special Arches and Montvall paper from Paris.

Instead of trying to paint clouds, she leaves blank paper and paints around the white patch.

"I like to be crazy", she says of her open-minded approach of mixing various techniques.

"If you don’t change, you’re normal".

Simões honed her personality working with mentors such as Rubens Matuk after realizing crunching numbers indoors was driving her nuts.

"I love nature and being outside and I need to discover things; art is good for your brain but being inside was like a jail", says Simões, who began her art careear in 1990.

The pinnacle was exploding the sprawling Amazon region during twelve e days by boat.

"We need to think about the Amazon; it’s beautiful but has problems", she says, mentioning the growing impact on native peoples, medicinal plants and wildlife.

"It’s a big puzzle".

Simões simply enjoys watching reactions of folks studying her work.

"I hope they’re glad to see my pictures. I like seeing the emotions some feel, but others feel nothing" she says, content knowing when a painting is done.

When I feel good in here" she says touching her heart. "I’m finished". "

Arts Reporter of The Pictorial
Victoria Island , Canada.


"It is not exatly the colors that the artist Cláudia Simões paints. They interpret sounds taken from light or in the form of melodies, musicality, loudness that one can hear, or as a rustling of nature, the squeaking sound of banana trees, the whisper of the waves, the hissing of the wind. From this angle her paintings give us the perfect perception of sounds, and because of this we not only can see them, we also can hear them.

Her blues are stubborn, temperamental, almost incompatible. They jump from the canvas to our eyes and invade all our senses. It was to be like that since the beginning of time. The universe should have the color of a "veranico, "the ideal color. But now we do not always have that, but this artist paints and reproduces in her work what she sees from inside. All is calm and bright, creatively textualized, smoky, shaping, as conceived since the beginning. Let me live in this blue?

The colors of the salmon when fainting becomes pink. But they also can become an angry sky. Where did anyone see such sky with so much diversity? It may be a sky from the North East of Brazil. It may be a sunset in Bali or in a bay at Bonete Beach in Sao Paulo, where the artist has her atelier. It may be a sunrise of Tanzania or one of those hot days in Venice. Or who knows, with so much purple perhaps it came from Asia, China, Laos or other landscapes? Because it is through traveling the world that Claudia goes after colors and they are captured in her watercolors. She liberates the same colors in bunches of bananas, coconut trees, women, surfers, windows, boats. Brazilian landscapes admitted as functional content of the artistic universe.

With an academic background in science and physics, Claudia Simões also maintained her way of seeing poetry that her senses capture. This energy transforms itself into a deep love of nature, as she testifies. As if following a cycle, this love transforms itself in her objects of art, depicting natural phenomena as she observe it and moving the cosmic chrome. I believe that this is why she found the explosions of the yellow and mustard, going from the material to the immaterial.

There is a lot in the personal attitude involved in the artistic and humanistic proposal of Claudia Simões work. When a white spot - or various spots - are carefully analysed they take the shape of Amazon storks flying low, shouting to a nearby traveller. When mysteries and explorations between the sky and the sea mix into the foam, they allow one to see a wet dolphin. Where was this? It may have happened in any place because the world is a shell.

Always controllable in her magnitude, through her art we owe nothing to the globalization initiated by Marco Polo, the one who carried the dough of pizza from Egypt to Italy, the spaghetti too, but he brought it from China. Claudia Simões transmits colors.

In the current of the rivers, in the slope, in the high tide and in the camping under the trees the eyes of the artist contemplate fishing. To cheer the hearts capable of so much, she paints sounds using techniques and light. She generates the transformation of the Brazilian artistic view, proposing paintings that are necessary and stretched. "

Joyce Cavalccante
The author Joyce Cavalccante wrote 7 books . She is president of the REBRA - Association of Brazilian Writers and member of the Council of Directors of RELAT - Association of Latin American Writers.

"Claudia Simões, who initiated in multiple arts...(from Pasquim 21, 2002)

Claudia Simões has had 2 careers> first she was a graduated student in Quantum Physics at the Unv. Of Sao Paulo, and actively participated in research while working at the Institute of Oceanoraphy, and the Atomic Reactor from 1972 to 1975.

Her activities as an artist began in 1990 and she was worked in the atelliers of Rubens Matuck, Ubirajara Ribeiro, Carlos Fajardo e Evandro Carlos Jardim.

Her work has a wide repercussion in the press and media, and she has received positive comments from critics, curators, and collectors from Brazil and around the world. Since 1998 she has had the ongoing support from Arches de Paris, the exclusive paper she uses for her watercolour paintings.

Throughout her trips of the five continents or through trails, Claudia captures not only the landscape but also the culture, the myths and the spirit of locals. She transforms the experience in series of watercolors of sophisticated technique and rare beauty. Infinite skies, sea and land, the horizon trembles and takes the viewer to penetrate the intimacy in unison with nature.

Her work has been presented during this last decade in individual and collective exhibitions in Brazil, Europe, Asia and the United States.

Important collective exhibitions: Bienal Íbero-Americanaof Watercolour, in Viña del Mar, Chile; Bras Art, Cith Hall, Paris, France; 1ª Bienal of Watercolour of the Art Museum of Latin America in Miami; Acqua Brasil, editions of 2000 e 2001, in Venice, Roma, Millan and Pavia, Itália.

Important individual exhibitions: Gallery Ives Fay, Paris, France; Museum of Modern Art of Resende, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Gallery Hebraica, São Paulo, Brazil; City Library, São Paulo, Brazil; Gallery Santa Putra, Bali, Indonesia; Gallery Quadra, Paris, France.

Claudia Simões was invited to participate in a project of cultural exhibitions and created a series of watercolour paintings - Images of Brazil - to be exhibited in Canada and in Australia in September 2002. She will also be presenting at the Exhibit of Art and Sports with the title - Total Drop – in October 2002, at the World Surf Championship in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. "

"The watercolor paintings created by Claudia Simões reflect her expertise in the use of color with deep feelings. As former of scientist her watercolors reveal a keep eye for detail, yet they have a broad, sweeping sense of simplicity. The settings of her paintings are charming, beautiful and sweet. If paintings is a reflection of the inner feelings of the artist, then happiness is surely the soul of Claudia."

Wayan Karja
Artist and Art educator

Would the sence of color
Be something of the spirit?
Grays, painted by Dutch artists of the XVII Century,
Create on the retina
Greens, blues and violets.
On the humidity of the watercolor pallet
The spectrum runs, light screams.
On the untouched paper
In the uncertainly of white
Reasoning move tinted by the experience
From journeyed lands
On the faults, on the African fields
Where footsteps
The same
Meet in the landscape"

Rubens Matuck

"Nuclear physicist with a broad academic background ClaudiaSimões exchnaged the atomic reactor for her art, for exhibitions in Brazil, in all of South America and in Europe.

In her frequent travels in Africa, the Far East or in the mountain rage of Mantiqueira Brazil, she captures not only the landscape but also the culture, the religiousness and the spirit of the places she visits and transforms them into a series of watercolors of rare beauty painted with the utmost technical skill. She depicts the energy of nature with precise strokes and with colors that sometimes are strong and aggressive.

Her painting translates her fertile imagination into scenes that acquire movement and transport us to strange and different worlds."

Meire Levin
Art Curator

"Looking at Claudia’s paintings, we find ourselves travelling in to yhe scenes depicted by her.

Walking on the beach, hearing the sound of wind through coconut trees, cheerful laugther under the blue sky…

This sense of freedom and pleasure…Where does this come from? Her spirit embraces all the living creatures of beauty. Her intimate approach and profound appreciation towards then is the source of her artistic creativity, I believe.

As a person from the opposite part on this planet against to her continent, I am always fascinated with Claudia’s cultural openness and understanding towards any foreing things. When she paints the scenes which impress her, she just record then but rather she express her respect and attachment to people and their life surrounding her at the moment. Whether she paints in her own country or outside it, her eye never gets bored but it always captures fresh impressions in her surroundings and she generously presents then in her works to share her joy of life with us.

Thanks to Claudia, we are sure how bealtiful life is."

Keiko Suzuki
Independent curator and researcher of contemporary Indonesian art Japan

"Claudia’s watercolors, shown in the exhibitions, have a precious potential. They give rise to a process of inner self investigation that I have rarely witnessed in works of art.

Her work has the ability to make us enjoy spaces and dimensions not only through the intellect, but also through distinct bodily sensations.

Beneath the apparent simplicity, Claudia’s watercolors stimulate a deep sensibility, leading us to profound experiences that go unnoticed most of the time."

Ivaldo Bertazzo

"With brushes and paper knives that put the oil paint to the canvas, the painting is made. With graphite, points and plumes to trace the paper, the dawing is made.

With sof brushes and water soluble pigments Claudia Simões paints very interesting watercolors with images that reveal much more than a sharp technique. They show affection, talent and a lot of dedication.

Her delightful waercolors re pleasant not only to the most demanding observer, but are also satisfying to the hearts and the minds of those who want from art something beyond paper and paint.

Mindful with details without losing herself on unnecessar particulars, Claudia Simões is an artist who masters the difficult technique of watercolors painting as a midia to geerously communicate the best of her rich experiences tranforming us, with her rare enthusiasm into virtual experimenters of the same pleasures she felt when creating."

Antonio Peticov

"Claudia’s work, within the lightness of watercolors, evokes a feeling, that is at times intense and strong, and at times refined and delicate, creating and emotional contrast difficult to achieve in this kind of painting. It feels almost like a music"

Ivan Lins

The World as Exercise

The wide lanscapes of the watercolors of Claudia Simões are a representation of the integrality of nature.

Infinite spaces of sky, atmosphere, sea and land, where the horizon sways, causing the beholder to enter in Claudia intimate trip – at one with nature

Yole Di Natale