‘I see myself as a realist, my work is impressionistic, but for me that’s reality.’
Peter Hartwig (Hoogezand, 1963) went to the Minerva Academy in Groningen where Matthijs Röling educated him. He taught Hartwig not to put much emphasis on details and to leave room for the viewers’ own interpretation. In his work, Hartwig tries to find the perfect balance between abstraction and figuration, which creates the tension in his paintings.
Peter Hartwig’s oeuvre includes interior pieces, people, landscapes and often the daily scenes around him such as his family and his backyard. Observing, memories and fantasy determine the image where the atmosphere plays an important role. With a loose brushstroke he establishes this atmosphere. The details are left out; the composition, drawn in a few lines, determines the image. The colors he uses play an important role. Hartwig uses a calm pallet of colors to maintain the right contrast in tones.
It is remarkable that the figures he paints are the main object of the abstract patterns. They blend into their environment or the landscape that is imagined in a rhythmic pattern of lines and shapes. The people in the image are in the end merely just extras.