- Art & Design
Sooner or later our true nature gets the upper hand, and we are glad it does. For eleven years, artist Stephanie Cime worked as a lawyer before she decided to make a career out of her passion for painting. A lot of reflecting, dreaming, and eventually having the courage to jump gave her a freedom that she will never hand in again. We spoke with her about the mission that she tries to fulfil with her works, the big questions that keep her up, and the creative urge that defines her life.
Her expressions hypnotise, her style lingers. Stephanie Cime makes paintings that you can recognise immediately as one from her hand. With her eyes on the permanently unfinished state of the world and ourselves, she is creating more than ever today. Those who enter her world arrive at abstract paintings that came about layer after layer. Imperfect, texture driven, and immersive shapes define each canvas. Calm and uproar reside simultaneously in every brushstroke, and the results speak volumes. Each time, a new work is born that does not only reaffirm the appeal of imperfections but also testifies to her philosophy. The latter constantly returns to the transience that dominates our existence in several aspects. Asymmetry and impermanence are lovingly honoured on a playing field where there is room for the smallest nuances. Life is complex and full of challenges, but with her paintings this artist tries to understand important issues better. At the same time, everything happens from an inherent ease, a second nature from which she is constantly further developing her path.
Her expressions hypnotise, her style linger
More and more eyes are finding the way to Cime’s art, and a road of possibilities stretches beckoning before her. However, things were different once. Even though she has always had the heart of an artist, for years she draped a cloak of shape over it. The reason for this is that, for a long time, her life held no special place for art. According to the painter herself, her youth was characterised by a lack of space for her authentic self, because it was believed that art was a second rank career. ‘I have always had an artist in me, but I kept her on the background for a long time. I grew up as the child of two doctors in a time where parents still decided the future of their children. All of this with the best intentions, no offence. Instead of following her calling and with the insistence of her parents, Cime started a university degree. What came after was a period in which she did not ask herself serious questions about the lack of true happiness in her job. However, a tremendous and impactful moment of reflection happened in 2018, when her younger brother died unexpectedly and her life tilted. Her fresh grief made her think deeply about life and what she wanted to get out of it. Our time on earth is limited, so doing what you truly love is one of the few things that really matter. The last push that she needed, came out of an unexpected corner. It was during the Covid crisis that she finally allowed herself to surrender completely to the storm within and she started painting frantically. You only need to see two works of the painter to have a clear view of her style. However, the common thread goes further than what you see at first glance. It is about the philosophy behind it. ‘I want to celebrate the elusive beauty of transience and imperfection. Making peace with our impermanent and unfinished nature,’ according to the artist herself. By giving attention to the imperfect and the temporary, she enters a special dimension full of nuances. She also works from the intention to not strive for an ideal. Small imperfections remind her incessantly that beauty is truly everywhere. ‘Life is fragile and transitory, yet so beautiful at the same time. Everything is temporary, nothing is forever. In the first place we as humans,’ she explains. Concerning materials, she tries to continue her respect for nature. Sand, stones, organic cotton, and linen are only a few of the elements that she likes to work with. Lately, she has been keeping her colours mainly neutral, although in the past she was not afraid of using bold shades. Nevertheless, recently her love for minimalism has been showing more strongly in her palette, and we are a fan of that.
The story of Stephanie Cime has only just begun. Her spacious canvases speak to our inherent fascination for the abstract. Layer after layer, she lets the work come to her, while she feels the enjoyment and love for her craft run through her veins. We are confident that there will be many continuations to what she has already realised with her works and think the same thing as any other looking at her paintings: she was always an artist.
Photography by Anthony Jacobs
Text by Cara Jacobs