Zilver [Silver]

Zilver1991syblspictures

Raoul De Keyser

1991-1992

Painting, 82 x 67 cm.
Materials: oil, canvas

Collection: Collection M HKA, Antwerp (Inv. no. BK6889_M150).

The title of this painting refers to the covering grey that dominates this work of art. The oil paint is applied thinly on the canvas. Here and there, some pieces of the linen are still visible. If you look closely to the canvas, you can see some little coloured paint splashes beneath the grey base. They have an autonomous and plastic function. They don’t create depth, but are vital for the special effect of the surface. The hesitation, by which they are applied, has not been hidden, but has become an intentional quality. The combination of colours and division of the canvas creates a strong stratification, that, together with the way the work is painted, results in Zilver (‘Silver’) having a great a power of expression. In that way, this painting is convincing, because of its simplicity, its clearance, and its autonomous nature.

This work of art dates from the nineties. By that time, De Keyser was already investigating painting itself and the possibilities of materials in that context for several years. His work is port of a global investigation program. The creativity evolved out of the practical confrontation with the materials of the medium itself. De Keyser investigates the medium, the paint and the texture of each work. The painter seems to test the mutual relation between colours, materials, forms and strokes of paint, and special possibilities. He doesn’t just want to display his art, but he tries to build up a process of veiling, by which he shows us things little by little, in a very slowly manner. This major intimacy harmonizes perfectly with the small size of the painting. 

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