The paintings of Josef Kote are symphonies of light and color. They are lyrically stunning and romantic, edgy and current. Kote achieves this delicate balance of seemingly contradictory qualities through his complete mastery in technique, and through years of experimenting to find his own unique style. With the lightness of a true master’s hand he combines classic academic and abstract elements, fusing these, literally letting them run into each other with dripping rivulets of riveting colors and light.
Kote’s trademarks are his bold brush work and sweeping strokes of vibrant colors applied - more often than not - with a pallet knife, while other areas of the canvas are left monochromatic and devoid of detail creating a negative space that lets the eye drift to infinity. The results are paintings that tremble in stillness with energy and light.
Influenced by many places where he lived, Albanian born, J.Kote began his journey towards artistic self-discovery in his youth and never looked back. From a very young age he was endlessly drawing and had the innate urge to create. By the age of 13, he had made up his mind to become an artist and devote his life to the arts. He focused on getting accepted into the finest art high school of his native Albania. Ultimately, after competing locally and nationally, he was awarded a coveted spot at ‘’National Lyceum of Arts’’ in Tirana.
In 1984, Kote followed this amazing feat by being accepted into the ‘’Academy of Fine Arts’’ of Tirana, where he was educated in the traditional approach of the old masters. Yet even as a student he wanted to brake loose of the limitations, he wanted to experiment and grow, sometimes leave paintings seemingly unfinished, shattering the boundaries of classic realism. While still in school, Kote also worked at a movie studio, and made a small but well received animation film Lisi.
In 1988 Kote graduated with a diploma in painting and scenography. The years of practice and his 8 year solid art education had prepared the young artist well to pursue his life’s quest of living and breathing art. It had set him on his lifelong journey to find his own unique style and language, to create stupendous paintings pulsating with the light and energy that he sees all around him.
Kote began his professional career as a scenographer at the Petro Marko Theatre in Vlore, but in late 90-s the 26 year old artist grew restless and decided to debark to Greece, where the warmth of the Mediterranean sun and brilliant light infused his paintings in tone and style and lent them a more impressionistic air.
ON THE WALL: Inside the Artist's Studio
ON THE WALL: Learn More