Oh You Pretty Things: Stephan Balleaux at Patrick Painter

Stephan Balleaux, Pandora, 2018, Oil on canvas, 106 x 137.8 inches, (270 x 350 cm), courtesy of Patrick Painter Gallery

By NOAH BECKER, April 2018

I caught up for a convo with the great painter Stephan Balleaux who has a show on in Los Angeles at Patrick Painter Gallery

Noah Becker: Where did you grow up?

Stephan Balleaux I grew up in the south of Brussels, capital of Belgium and Europe.

NB: Who are your favorite historical painters?

SB: Velasquez, Vermeer, Rembrandt, Rubens,

NB: Ah, great taste! What time do you wake up in the morning?

SB: 6.30 am, yes, I have young kids.

NB: I sleep in late, it’s a bad habit. Do you smoke?

SB: I don't smoke.

NB: How do you think your lifestyle changes the way you paint?

SB: Everything in an artist's life changes the way to paint: how many hours one can use to work continuously, day job, night life, nomad or sedentary. I need to be very organized and constant, because I am doing a lot of things per week. I am totally not dreaming or hesitating when I am in my studio, I can't afford too much wasted time.

Stephan Balleaux The Companion in Pearls, 2018, Oil on canvas, 78.75 x 63 inches, (200 x 160 cm) 

NB: What's your favorite contemporary artist?

SB: For the moment I am looking a lot to Ed Ruscha.

NB: Interesting you would say Ruscha. What kind of music do you listen to? Do you listen to music while painting?

SB: I am listening to a lot of different music, mostly music with a baroque aspect or a progressive tone. The lasts few months it was a lot of Radiohead, Tool, 16 horsepower, Ron Carter, Bach, Pergolese. I can't paint if I don't have loud music in my ears, I am too sensitive to sound - music is my silence.

NB: Where are you currently living and how did you meet the art dealer Patrick Painter?

SB: I live in Brussels. After wandering a lot the last ten years, I settled back in a small town just outside Brussels. Patrick Painter called me one day and he proposed to me if I would be interested in working together - and I was! WM


Noah Becker

Noah Becker shows his paintings internationally. A visual artist, saxophonist and the publisher and founding editor of Whitehot Magazine, Becker has also written freelance articles for many other major magazines. Becker's writing has appeared in The Guardian, VICE, Garage, Art in America, Interview Magazine, Canadian Art and the Huffington Post. He has also written texts for major artist monographs published by Rizzoli and Hatje Cantz. Becker directed the New York art documentary New York is Now (2010) viewable on Youtube. 

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