By A.L.J Van de Walle, Professor Emeritus at Ghent University
Patrick Gerola was born in Brussels in 1959. Graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Brussels. Afterwards he joind the Mudra Company to work with Micha Van Hoecke, artistic director of choreography of the French Maurice Bejart school, an institution outstanding in the art of ballet with an oriental touch. Patrick Gerola left Brussels to go live and work in Japan in 1983, where he met his future companion, Tomomi Hida. Gerola's art reflects not only a striking cultural link between the old continent and his welcoming country in the orient but also reflects his numerous experiences. His affinity with choreography is shown in the elegant lines that characterise his pictorial compositions. His art reminds us at the same time a certain paint brush touch of Japanese calligraphy. Gerola also creates a synthesis between his shapes and colours. One detail figures as an entirety, a touch of warm and sparkling tones pierced by an intense light. Note that the artist himself prepares the colours in accordance with the ancient traditions "al fresco" that gives a particular and unique aspect to his artistic work. The titles of his paintings often reveal his intense dreams of colours like "Bleu et Couleurs", "Formes et Couleurs" and even "Jardin". Other titles give proof of a powerful source of inspiration from music, an art form that lives profoundly inside him. With "Nocturne" he calls up not only the night but also the entertainment of musical instruments. The title "Harmonie" makes you think about a harmony pleasant to your ear, where the totality gives you a musical impression. Also the naming "Percussion" stands for the music that is made from striking instruments in a baroque way, that is to say much modern than the Hungarian composer Bartok. His other titles like "Kamakura" memorialize a place of the high society of Japan and its close bond with the artist. Finally note "Paysage d'Asie" where the artist's vision takes us to the faraway horizons of this tremendous continent. From this short analysis it appears that the personality and life of Patrick Gerola inspires his pictorial artwork in a fascinating way. Add to this, in conclusion that Gerola has lately devoted himself outstandingly to the problem of the decoration of textiles, and that on the request and to the satisfaction of the textiles industry. His remarkable success in the field of industrial design adds an extra level to the artistic carere of Patrick Gerola. Hereby he joins numerous famous painters like the French Matisse, also known for his great textile sensibility.
December 30, 2004 in Ghent.