An artist of verve and enthusiasm with an expressionist leaning, Herman Pekel is best known for his wild, impassioned, ebullient and kinetic atmospheric interpretations of the land, sea and cityscapes. Herman is a very fine watercolourist, producing paintings full of atmosphere and light. Painting ‘en plein air’ he mixes traditional impressionistic values with versatility, with a strong emphasis on technique.
Environmental issues are of paramount concern to Herman, and this love and veneration of nature in all “her” contrasting glory is unmistakably reflected in each landscape panorama he paints. His pictures reveal a complex inner design often manifesting in vectored strokes, aptly scratched-in flourishes to perfect the compositional balance and internal pictorial rhythms, a lucidity of colour and surprising tonality. The scope of his pictorial world is somewhat daunting, ranging from soft, cosy draped interiors to dynamic industrial scenery, tempestuous Australian vistas and romantic European reminiscences.
Herman Pekel was born in Ringwood, Melbourne and his obsession with art was born soon after the age of six. Herman was 17 when he held his first solo exhibition in Melbourne. It was an extraordinary success, and he sold all of his paintings. Since that time, he has won over 100 major awards.
In 1982, Herman undertook a fine arts degree program at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology. This cultivated his appreciation of contemporary art, as well as experimentation with abstract espressionism.
The influences of the Australian and European impressionist movements are obvious in Herman Pekel’s work. The emphasis is always technique, and the message portrayed is:
It’s not what you paint, but how you paint it.”