Schulten was born in 1938 in Ootmarsum, a small town in
Holland. Today he is celebrated as Holland's most
successful contemporary painter. The works hanging in
this room are from his first exhibition in the United
States, which took place at The Lowe Gallery in June,
Though always fascinated with painting, Schulten first
pursued a career in advertising, and for many years he
co-owned a very promising advertising agency. In 1989, a
near-fatal automobile accident changed his life forever.
The accident left Schulten in a coma for two weeks,
during which time he remembers seeing a constant flow of
images comprised of shifting prisms of color. Upon his
recovery Schulten closed his agency and began painting
full-time; his goal was to recapture his visions on
canvas so that he might share them with the public.
"It's a miracle that I am still alive," he says, "this
has given me a new zest for living and I try to transfer
this feeling of optimism onto canvas."
Schulten first painted abstract canvases dominated by
colorful geometric areas. This was a logical, though
unconscious, continuation of his work as a graphic
designer. Next came a period in which large floral
themes played a major part.
In 1992, Schulten turned his attention to landscapes,
and he began by painting scenes of Twente, the region in
which Ootmarsum is located. Over time, his landscapes
have become less regional and more universal, though the
rolling fields planted with maize, the ancient wooded
banks and the quiet hamlets have not been forgotten.
Schulten's work is characterized by bright colors that
he uses to fragment the landscape into large vertical
bands. The effect is that of a mosaic on which the ever
changing light throws different colors again and again.
"There is always something new to be discovered," he
says, "moreover I feel that my work is still gaining in
depth. There seems to be no limit to what one can do
with paint. Its beauty is increasing, maturing. "I have
not finished, on the contrary, for I have now discovered