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Art appreciation

So I went to the opening of db2305's exhibition of no less than 29 paintings in the Galerie Uithof in Utrecht yesterday afternoon, and I'm very glad that I did. Of course, I had seen some of the works in question at her home and/or her webpage already, but seeing all these different works in one room together is something else entirely.

db2305 paints in oils on canvas, in a figurative and realist style, and recurring themes are flowers, women and children. Those depicting women make up a large number of the works exhibited at this gallery, but there was also a series of two (to be extended to four later on) of trees/forest landscapes and eight flower paintings (daisies and poppies).

Although most of her works are done in a very colourful palette, with vibrant hues like reds and oranges and yellows, blues and greens the dominant ones; there are also a few works that are darker and perhaps as a result of that, I found them less accessible. But interesting nonetheless!

For instance, there's a very dark painting called 'By night': it shows a cowering naked woman and a somewhat menacing, fully clothed male figure whose face, despite us seeing him from the front, remains in shadow. A poem by Marsman scrolled across the canvas in white lettering completes the painting.

The other dark picture that I thought stood out from the rest was that of a woman sitting underneath a lantern on a street bench, and the cityscape reared up dark and black behind her. The woman was fully visible, even if the lantern wasn't shedding any light on her; and the lack of an obvious light source lent the scene a surrealist quality, somewhat reminiscent (somewhat, mind you!) of Willink.

But the picture that spoke to me most directly, I think, was the one called 'Into the light': a woman captured in db2305 usual vibrant colours who seems to be disappearing in a whirlwind of bright, white light. The technique and treatment used in this painting strongly reminded me of the work of Mondrian dating from just before the Great War, 1910-1911 -- some of my favourite works of his date from this period.

As vibrant and brilliant as her works are, db2305 was even more radiant in her red and tan ensemble and beautifully embroidered red pointy shoes. Her 9-year old son had dyed his hair green for the occasion, and delighted everyone present with his knowledgeable comments on his mother's painting. He gave us all a guided tour, in which the words "geknoei" and "geklieder" were frequently used with authoritative assurance. FYI: these words are synonyms for "mess" in Dutch.

Comments

( 2 Speak Like A Child — Shout To The Top )
db2305
Feb. 13th, 2004 01:10 pm (UTC)
Thanks....he was extremely cute yesterday, wasn't he? Even if I do make messes of my canvases. Not coloring between the lines is still a major offense in primary schools, I guess!
Thanks for the review, I was happy to see you there, and the dark paintings do seem to reflect a dark year in my life, don't they?
gamiila
Feb. 16th, 2004 06:02 am (UTC)
Re:
Oh dear, were you in a dark place when you painted them? I'm sorry to hear it! Glad to see you've come out of it now, though -- if only for purely selfish reasons: I'm crap at offering comfort. No, really.

But yeah -- you probably should learn to colour between the lines ;-)
( 2 Speak Like A Child — Shout To The Top )

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