With oils and a palette knife, Els Knockaert paints a world full of light and colour. Born in Belgium in 1964 and a graduate of the country’s top art schools, Els considers herself a woman of the world, having travelled extensively in Asia, Africa and Colombia. From 1996 to 2002, Els and her husband lived on a farm in the Colombian jungle and ran a guest house, while she exhibited her work and taught painting in Cartagena, Barranquilla and Santa Marta. With the civil war drawing closer, they left Colombia in 2003 and settled in Olargues, as the landscape reminded them of Colombia.
Reﬂecting her love of life, Els’s paintings are full of colour and light, including village life, markets (the Sunday market in nearby Saint-Chinian appears on the cover), vineyards, the grape harvest and portraits, all painted in her own village and the surrounding countryside.
Els is an accomplished painter, with a long list of exhibitions, both solo and in collaboration with other artists. She accepts commissions for portraits, and also holds workshops for beginners and more experienced artists in her studio in Olargues — one of France’s prettiest villages — where students use different techniques and materials to learn to sketch and paint.01
Cover photo: “Le marché au printemps” (oil on canvas) – 100 x 100 cm