Artist Interview - Boubakary Konseimbo
Boubakary Konseimbo (Bouba K.) is a self-taught, highly successful, and internationally renowned artist from Burkina Faso. He pursued painting because he loves it and readily admits that he never thought he would make a living as an artist. These days you can find him at any number of art festivals and competitions throughout the US and abroad, usually winning first place. In a recent interview, he told AFRK Market about his inspiration, his technique and how he knows when a painting is completed.
What inspires you to paint? "I just have a love of painting. I can be inspired by almost anything but especially by nature, people, movement, birds, and fish."
How would you describe your technique? "The foundation of my technique is how I prime my canvas. When I am in the USA, I mix wood glue with water. In Africa, I use sap from trees. This is what I use to prime my canvas. I do not use gesso. The result is that my paint reaches the actual canvas and the color and the canvas do not fade. If I used gesso, the paint would sit on top of it and would be shiny and prone to cracking if rolled. My colors are not glossy. Instead, they are earthy, they look like chalk and my canvas is flexible! If necessary I can roll up my paintings without worry.
The second element of my technique is my paint. I use clay and red rocks. In order to use them I developed a process which involves soaking them for about three weeks. My priming technique allows the colors from the clay and earth to become part of the canvas.
Third, I seal the artwork with a matte varnish.
And fourth, I take my time. There is no rush. I often leave a painting for weeks before I return to it."
How do you know then, when you have completed the painting? "To me painting is a means of expression. I am expressing something through my art. A painting is done when there is nothing left to say."