Born in Poland in 1952, Jacek Yerka studied fine art and graphics prior to becoming a full-time artist in 1980. While at university, Yerka resisted the constant pressures of his instructors to adopt the less detailed, less realistic techniques that characterize so much of contemporary art. Instead, he stubbornly continued to work in the classic, meticulous Flemish style he still favors to this day. In the end, it was his teachers who eventually relented, finally recognizing the talent of their determined student.
The pastoral atmosphere of the Polish countryside provides a solid foundation for much of Yerka’s art. However, it is his own uniquely evocative dreams that delineate the complex, often arcane imagery of his work. One need only glance at the luminous surfaces of Yerka’s canvases to perceive his adoration and resonance with the master painters of the 15th and 16th centuries, key factors in his surrealist development. Hieronymus Bosch, Pieter Bruegel, Hugo van der Goes and Jan van Eyck were powerful, early influences.
Yerka uses precise painting techniques and his many influences in his work, but he mainly relies on his unlimited imagination to create surrealistic compositions and landscapes that have a unique connection with the natural world. While pastoral, his work often portrays the sometimes-uneasy alliance between man and nature.
Check out the gallery after the jump, or visit his website to see more of the work of this visionary artist.