“I live in a never-ending dream inside my head.” This might be the best way to describe Amanda Tutschek, whose every answer during her interview with editor-in-chief Charles Finch emits a sunny, optimistic glow. It makes sense, then, that the Canadian artist is currently based in Venice, which she says she has quickly fallen in love with. Starting out as a model for Guess, the abstract painter has recently started a new chapter, launching The Painted Peach, private sessions where like-minded artists can get together, drink wine, and, of course, paint. Below, Amanda talks artistic inspiration, living in a movie-town, and her relationship with cars, alongside photography by Matilda Montgomery.

Amanda Tutschek, by Matilda Montgomery for A Rabbit’s Foot, 2023.

Painting seems to come naturally to you without formal training?

I’ve painted for as long as I can remember. Throughout my entire childhood with my mom. She had a flower shop and was always using her hands to create things. We were constantly making new things together. It swept me off my feet. It was never my plan to pursue a career in art, so I didn’t make much time for it. And then when I was the most lost I’d ever been, It came and found me. And thank god for that!

How do you feel when you paint?

Painting enables me to find myself and lose myself at the same time. That’s why I do it. It’s everything that I can’t put into words. It’s intoxicating. It’s everything.

Amanda Tutschek, by Matilda Montgomery for A Rabbit’s Foot, 2023.

Are you influenced by other painters?

I find myself drawn mostly to abstract work. I love that it involves so much imagination, not only for the painter but for the viewer. One painting can mean a different thing to every person that looks at it. It can leave a mark on each one. I’m picky with what I like. When you see something beautiful, more often than not you don’t know why it’s beautiful. You just see it, and you have the feeling. Not a decision but a reaction. Joan Mitchell was the first show I went to where I floated through the exhibition and found myself walking out 5 hours later unsure of what day or time it was. It was the first show where I stood in front of a piece and cried in awe. Same with Monet. Those moved me deeply.

The artist’s life in Venice seems very cool from the outside looking in…

Everything on Instagram looks cool. Not many post their failures. The reality is that life is hard, especially in a town where everybody wants instant success. It takes a strong backbone to stay grounded and authentic, as well as find your people. I’ve been stomped on and spit out here but I continue to pick myself up and never give up. This varies for me as some days I have zero motivation or inspiration. Other days I’ll be painting for 24 hours straight without realizing. There is no rhyme or rhythm when it comes to my day to day schedule. When I feel it, I let it consume me. I’ll get my coffee or my tea, put on classical music, and get lost.

Tell us about your cars.

I bought my first oldie—a ‘68 Dodge Pickup—when I was 22. I knew absolutely nothing about old cars or trucks but what I did know is that she was brighter than the sun and the long bed could fit about 20 paintings. I just recently added a 1997 Mercedes to the mix. She’s baby blue and cute as can be.

Amanda Tutschek, by Matilda Montgomery for A Rabbit’s Foot, 2023.
Amanda Tutschek, by Matilda Montgomery for A Rabbit’s Foot, 2023.

You live in a beach and movie town—what movies do you love and what beach is your place?

I’m a sucker for old films. Old is gold. There was a depth to old movies that you hardly see on the screen today. Especially black and white. They are more dreamlike, more pure, composed of shapes and forms and movements and light and shadow. I’m lucky enough to live just steps from the beach and find myself running down for a dip most mornings. I love driving up to Malibu if I’m spending the day at the beach. It’s one of my favourite places to unwind.

You started out your own teaching project The Painted Peach. Tell us about your experience teaching and how and why you started the program and how it helps people.

When I started teaching classes and creating “The Painted Peach”, I did so to remind others to be free. Exploring the mind of the individual human is the most valuable thing in the world. We often forget how to get back to our childish ways when we’re wrapped up in the hustle of our lives. I wanted this to be a place for people to come and be creative and let go. It allows those in the corporate or tech field to come into my studio with their teams and leave their desks behind. We enjoy wine, good music, and come together through art. Our classes take place outdoors at my art studio, surrounded by plants and art, which immediately sets the tone for an authentic experience.

If you could show your work anywhere where would you want to?

It’s always been a dream to showcase in Paris, as that’s where I first fell in love with galleries and museums. But I care less about the place and more about making the audience feel something. If I can move one person in the way Joan Mitchell moved me, that’s everything.

Amanda Tutschek, by Matilda Montgomery for A Rabbit’s Foot, 2023.