Johan Wobbes
Groningen 1966 The Netherlands

Painting is a tremendous exciting way to relate to the world, to the past, the present and the future. It is an exciting search for new stories to tell. There are a lot of thoughts, ideas and aspirations I'd like to explore and develop in and through my artwork. I'll try to shed some light on the things that move me and invite you to participate in my work.


A main concern and aspiration of my work is to rethink and to reinvent particular pictorial elements and their possibilities for meaning. It is in particular the narrative references that have my interest. One of my objectives is to 'rediscover' the multiple meaning possibilities in a painting. I am sure this is what a lot of the old master painters did namely grasping as much as possible and transform it into a comprehensive image. Only since mid 19th century artists changed in attitude and tried to eradicate the multiple interpretability of the artwork.

I wrote my opinion about painting and all that is related to it in my bachelor thesis of philosophy. To give a general outline of my opinion, although tricky to sketch it in a few lines, I think that autonomy and essentialism are two characteristics of our time that dominate and still have a positive appeal but are in fact ideological delusions that have a negative impact on our culture. On the other hand we have a magnificent rich traditional background especially in painting that incorporates a tremendous creative potentiality which is hardly recognised. I'd recommend anyone who is interested in painting, to read my thesis 'Dialectical exploration of painting'. It is open for discussion, feel free to respond on it.

Ideas and projects
Only recently I made a
triptych, a so-called Altarpiece. See here for a description and pictures of the artwork. An Altarpiece other than ordinairy paintings used to have specific functions. One can think of devotion and contemplation but also of the role it had in liturgy and annual processions. One of the reasons why I am interested in making an Altarpiece is precisely this aspect. The fact that one has to rethink and revaluate the function of a painting. I'd like to continue to develope this particular aspect but in order to do so I need sponsors or organisations to give me this assignment.

Who doesn't like to travel? I would like to travel through Europe and paint the countryside. In the summer of 2005 I biked through Suffolk England and did some landscaping, see here. I'd like to do this in other (parts of) countries too. In order to be able to do so I would like to be invited by organisations or private persons who would like to support me and facilitate the trip. Of course they will get an artwork in return.

A well painted portrait in which the person is recognizable depicted is not necessarily interesting. It becomes interesting when it tells something about the person and invites the beholder to speculate about the meaning of it. See here for some examples.

Painting: Constantijn Huygens Artschool Kampen the Netherlands 1992
Philosophy: University of Amsterdam the Netherlands 2010

If you want to discuss the mentioned topics or anything else for that matter you can reach me by mail The same holds for those who want to order an artwork or are interested in cooperation in particular projects.