Local talent Linc Thelen is often referred to as a “triple threat.” Artist, interior designer and builder, Linc’s natural aptitude was apparent early on in his life, as he spent much of his time with his father who owned a design-build firm. Linc studied painting at Northern Illinois University, and then expanded his knowledge of the Renaissance Masters while studying in Italy and France. A Chicago native for twenty years, Linc’s thirteen year storied career is marked by high-level partnerships, an evolving signature style, a “master-builder and craftsman" approach, and a drive towards constant innovation. We sat down with him to better understand his unique holistic perspective on design.
A pivotal moment for me was in my mid-twenties: I started selling a lot of work and signed with a gallery. Even before that, I always knew that this is who I am and who I've always been: an artist. It wasn't necessarily a conscious choice. There was just no question that this is what I was meant to do.
Capturing life moments and interpreting my thoughts onto canvas. I love experimenting with new ideas. Creating something new is awe-inspiring.
The chiaroscuro technique represents form by focusing on dark and light. The Renaissance Masters influence my work with a story. I sometimes take classical paintings and breathe new life into them. For example, I have taken “Madonna and Child,” “The Last Supper,” and “The Raft of Medusa” and reinterpreted them into my own style.
In 2008 I grew tired of painting classical themes and moved towards creating a new vocabulary. I made the next jump to creating my own language.
It's about keeping work and ideas current and contemporary. I am open to taking risks and not playing it safe, in an effort to create something new. It's about trusting yourself where others may have doubt.
When a client comes to me for architecture, design and project management; I find that most intoxicating. The master builder approach is unique because I am involved in every step of the project from conception to reality and everything in between. It's a lengthy but enjoyable process, and requires a deep understanding of how things are built and put together. It is important I really understand the client's needs and deliver them a home that fits their unique lifestyle.
Architectural Artifacts is a great spot if you are looking for unique architectural items. I also love Lightology and Porcelanosa.
I think I'm still coming into my own in regards to architecture. A goal of mine is to create my own signature style that is immediately recognizable.
The people and that midwestern hospitality. I love the design industry, the arts, the vendors and the camaraderie of working alongside other architects and designers. I am thankful to have really wonderful clients, which makes it all worthwhile in the end.
Meet Linc in person at Buckingham Interiors + Design during Design Harvest. “ENCOMPASS” is a solo exhibit featuring 13 new works. Learn about his process, his inspiration and the evolution of his work.
Saturday, September 20th 11 to 8 & Sunday, September 21st 11am to 6pm
Buckingham Interiors + Design, 1822 West Grand Avenue in Chicago
Visit Linc's Refined Haystack profile to see additional photos from his projects, learn more about his approach, and inquire about his services.