Julia Hallström Hjort
“I have always dreamt of living in an old house somewhere close to nature, where I have enough space for an art studio and a big garden,” says Swedish artist Julia Hallström Hjort, and continues with a light laughter: “Then I would fill the house with old collectables and antiques, and get a cat and a dog.”
At the moment Julia lives in the southern part of Sweden, in the city of Malmö, and enjoys a life of simplicity. She has been a painter for several years but actually started out studying medicine and psychology. “However, I suffer from chronic pains and had to give up my studies. Instead, I turned to painting. It has been a big part of my rehabilitation.”
The pieces by Julia all have an air of calmness: Soft, organic shapes, subtle colours and finesse for textures dominate her artistic practice. She mainly uses acrylics and oil paint but also explores the look of crayons and pencils.
“I’ve discovered that I like to paint with more colours than I used to. Everything I did, used to be very subtle in muted beige, white and blue,” she says. “Now I’m playing around with brighter colours and enjoy the process of incorporating shades I used to avoid.”
A space of freedom
A recurring source of inspiration for Julia is without a doubt the nature surrounding her. It is where she has found her colour palette and where she clears her mind: “I try to live a simple life with simple pleasures and spend most of my free time walking or listening to audiobooks.”
When she paints, she often goes to her tiny art studio, situated in a narrow attic space. Although it is smaller than most studios, it is a place of complete freedom. “It’s a space where I don’t have to worry about not being too messy, and where I can experiment and let my creativity loose completely.”