It is not at all surprising that Alexandra Gersdorff became a painter. She is a direct descendant of the famous Belgian painter Franz Courtens, and his son Alfred Courtens, sculptor of the royal family of Belgium to whom we owe, among other things, the memorial equestrian bronze of Albert I in Brussels, and of a long list of succeeding artists, including her mother. Alexandra was born with that singular creative genius. She did have other interests and did in fact follow her dream of being an elementary school teacher for a while but the universe conspired for her to return to her ancestral calling.
A graduate of the Van der Kelen Institute in Brussels, Venice International University in San Cervolo, and the Académie des Beaux-Arts de Boitsfort in Brussels, Alexandra worked with oil and acrylic on canvas and learned artistic discipline and techniques from trompe l’oeil to traditional fresco and Monumental Art. But she also discovered her own inner creativity and desire to expand beyond the prescribed limits of classical art.
Happily married to Diego Smets, a real estate developer, and mother of five beautiful young children, Alexandra is quite a busy woman; still her passion and all consuming energy demanded another outlet. Painting naturally answered the call of her heart. Her work is nothing if not the manifestation of her deepest yearning, evoking her irrepressible need to share her joy and compassion in ways that her voice and words could not. She literally lost her vocal cords at one point because she could not comprehend the stiffness and negativity of a few colleagues in her first chosen career. Bemused and misunderstood, and not one to confront, she retreated into artistic expression.
Abstract in its very nature, her artwork marries movement and poise, color and restraint, elation and composure. It defies definition because the artist resists labels. If Alexandra could not be contained in the rigid structure of a bureaucratic educational system, she was not going to let art imprison her in a defined style. Freedom is her essence. Her positivism, like the radiance of her smile, bursts out of her every gesture in a sort of unchoreographed dance - call it a trance - as the colors land onto the canvas and take shape. On contemplating her paintings, the viewer knows the artist was not thinking, not planning, and only living in the exact moment her indomitable spirit took hold of her and she became but a channel; for that’s when the magic happens and love is shared.
Beyond the attraction she exercises on private art lovers, Alexandra Gersdorff was also represented in prestigious venues such as the Louvre in Paris in October 2011. She was subsequently solicited to participate in different art shows in February 2012 in Brussels and October 2012 in New York and also Hong Kong in March 2013 and Palm Springs in February 2014. It is quite telling that she was called upon by the Belgian Embassy in Paris to exhibit her work on the occasion of King’s Day on November 15, 2012. But this is only the beginning for Alexandra, as her work garners greater acclaim and recognition around the world, watch her soar and take her place next to her illustrious ancestors.