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Remo Bianco (1922-1988)

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This blog is devoted to the “golden” paintings by Remo Bianco. The studio Delise catalogue , which contains many examples of these golden paintings, is now available at  The reason is that the paintings remind my of the golden minimal painting by Tomas Rajlich. Different but somehow they have a same approach to the canvas. They devide the canvas into equal parts  and the golden layer is vissible in each adn every square.

The Tableaux Dorés series was executed by Bianco from 1957 as a development from his Collages. They represent one the most well-known cycles of the artist, and also the one that lasted the longest amount of time.

Bianco observed: “In 1957, in Milan, I applied some small sheets of gold leaf to a collage surface, after having painted it as a monochrome. The result was a two colour artwork, like a herald. This experience was probably the most ongoing of my researches. I continued this research for years, sometimes alongside other new Collages and other research”.

The two-colour backgrounds, oil or enamel paint, to which the gold leaf is subsequently applied, often have a white part alongside a red, blue or green surface, as well as other coloured surfaces. There are also some Tableaux Dorés with a monochromatic background or made with straw or fabric. These works stand out because of the light that radiates from the golden “tessera” (squares) the surfaces of which, irregular and frequently appearing veiled by shadows, create a counterpoint to the preciousness and fragility of the material. As expressions of a “contemplative maturity”, the Tableaux Dorés can be interpreted as “a sort of curtain that the artist brings down so that the viewer’s eyes can investigate the surface and beyond it but, at the same time, they shun theatricalism, instead proposing absolute silence” (P. Biscottini 2005).

Tnere are several Bianco publications available at

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Another scarce Benno Wissing publication

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Blog readers know of the importance of Benno Wissing for dutch typography and design and today i present one of the really scarce publications by Wissing he made for the Museum Boymans van Beuningen in 1951. A smaller sized catalogue which has the typical Wissing qualities of transparent , but personal design by Wissing. It is on the exhibition ” 19e EEUWSE EN MODERNE SCHILDERKUNST UIT HET MUSEUM VAN SCHONE KUNSTEN TE LUIK “. A catlogue which i did not know existed but what appears to appear one of earliest of designs Wissing made for the Museum Boymans van Beuningen in 1951. The condition is still excellent and looking and searching for this publication on the inytern et i did not find another copy for sale….so scarce andf now available at www.ftn-books-com.

kunst luik


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Paul Blanca (1958-2021)

Paul Blanca

Last Saturday dutch photographer Paul Blaca died. His body was worn out after years of drug and alcohol abuse. Without Blanca dutch photography would have been half as interesting as it is now. He was self taught and discovered and explored portrait photography in a very special and own way, transforming it and perfecting it into his preferred form of photography.

the following text comes from the Paul Blanca site:

Paul Blanca (1958) is a Dutch self-taught photographer who started with a Canon F1 and later switched to a 6×6 cm Haselblad camera. In the 80s he created a series of violent self-portraits inspired by Robert Mapplethorpe (1946 – 1989) and Andres Serrano. Mapplethorpe introduced Blanca into the art world to artists like Grace Jones and Keith Haring stating “Paul Blanca is my only competitor”. Mapplethorpe’s favourite was Blanca’s self-portrait ‘Mother and Son’.

Hans van Maanen and Erwin Olaf call Paul Blanca the photographer of emotion. That ties in with his work. His self-portraits run like a thread through his overall work. For some things you can’t ask a model. For example, to hit a nail through someone’s hand. And like the self-portrait Mickey Mouse. In which a smiling Mickey Mouse is carved into his back with a thumb up.

For his series ‘Par la Pluie des Femmes’ women were captured in tears by thinking of their most traumatic experience. When he lived in Spain for 2 years, he stood with his camera at the front of the Spanish bullfighting arena. This resulted in the portfolio Sangre de Toro (Blood of the Bull): silk-screen prints with Bull’s blood.

In the beginning of the 90s he photographed the facial expression of speedball hookers for the series ‘Wit en Bruin’. Speedball is a very dangerous mixture of cocaine with heroin or morphine and has a substantial risk of overdose.

In the series ‘Deformation’ he was inspired by Rob Leer‘s SM scene. Models mutulated by fishline and hanging in the air, supported by the same fishline. This series was made for Amsterdam International Fashion Week (AIFW), in collaboration with fashion designer Hester Slaman, and exposed in Apart Gallery Amsterdam.

With the series ‘Kristal’ and ‘Mi Matties’ he had a double exhibition at Witzenhausen Gallery in 2008. Kristal is a series about the sweet and the bitter in relation with women. Presented in Witzenhausen Gallery Amsterdam in 2008. Mi Matties (my friends) is a series made in one of the neighborhoods of old Amsterdam. The portraits show young men who are presenting themselves as a group, sort of a gang.

In 2014 he created a self-portrait ‘Mother and Son’, 32 years after the first self-portrait, where he carries his mother, just like he carried her to bed for 4 years because she couldn‘t walk.

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Robert Combas (1957) (continued)

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I know of many artist who at one time in their lives were invited to decorate a church or execute stained windows. In the Netherlands it is Marc Mulders who is the best example. Acroos the border many other names like Matisse, Rothko, Foujita and Chagall and recently i discovered that Robert Combas made his own contribution to this kind of art. The exhibition was held at the Vieille Église Saint-Vincet in Merigmac / France.

Impressive paintings of arguably the best of all Figuration artists. Catalogue is available at

combas eglise

The French artist Robert Combas has become known as one of the protagonists of “Figuration Libre”, the French form of new figuration in the 1980s. Robert Combas was born at Lyon in 1957, he grew up in Sète, where he also began to study at the “École des Beaux-Arts” in 1974. Between 1975 and 1980 he completed his studies at the DNSAP in Montpellier. In those years the Punkrock movement had decisive influence on Robert Combas. In 1978 he even founded a band, together with Hervé di Rosa and Richard di Rosa. In 1979 Robert Combas, Hervé di Rosa and Ketty Brindel published the art magazine “Bato”. From those days on, Robert Combas was able to establish himself as painter and graphic artist in the style of “Figuration Libre”. Along with Rémi Blanchard, François Boisrond and Hervé di Rosa, Robert Combas was a founding father of the artist group of the same name. Comics and graffiti inspired his works, Pop Art and Arabian art can be named as additional sources of influences. Strong and striking colors with black contour lines increase the effect of his images. As of the late 1980s an increasingly mystical tendency can be observed, Robert Combas’ works are darker and gloomier. In the 1990s Combas expanded his field of artistic activity: He writes poetry and works photographs over with felt tip pen, assemblages are also part of his oeuvre. After the turn of the millennium music became a great source of inspiration for Robert Combas once again, and he made large paintings in cooperation with rock bands. “Ma peinture c’est du rock”, my painting is rock music, said the artist about his work.

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DADA en Drachten ( Dr8888 )

Most people do not know it and personally i did not realise the relationship between Drachten/ Dr8888 and the Dada and Merz mouvements until recently.

But it appears that some of the artists from Friesland had strong relationships with Dada artists and even were influenced by them . In the same way Dada artists freed themselves from the bourgeois morality, Werkman tried to do the same, although freedom in morality was less important than having a free spirit, searching freedom in his art. The Museum in Drachten finally realized some decade ago that their true importance was this heritage. Dada in the Netherlands is nothing else than Dada in Friesland and Drachten. They made a choice and exploited this heritage since and with one of these exhibition a magnificent catalogue was published, which is now available at

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Peter Stämpfli (1937)

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The reason for this blog is that i lately found sand deiscovered some interesting Pop Art artists in Germany and Switzerland and Peter Stämpfli is one of them.

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Born July 3, 1937 in Deisswil, Switzerland Stämpfli is a Swiss painter of the Pop Art movement. A major figure in 20th century painting, Peter Stämpfli has always scrutinized everyday life: our environment, our objects, our gestures. However, far from being satisfied with the simple appearance, his work has endeavored to reveal the depth and the strength that it contains. From 1963, the artist devotes himself to a work of inventory of all the repetitive details of everyday life, which he methodically fixes on a white background. The artist isolates, from 1969 until today, the pattern of the tire, emblematic of our industrial society; it quickly becomes his favorite theme and offers countless variations. Interview with an artist who appropriates his entourage in amazing simplicity to invent his own icons… an absolutely Pop art.

www, has added a Centre Georges Pompidou title recently. It is the book published on the occasion of the 1981 Paris exhibition in the Pompidou museum.

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Pieter Stoop (1946)

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Two names triggered me to look a little closer at the works of Pieter Stoop. The fact that the book now available at comes from the personal colelction of Henk Peeters and….. Rudi Fuchs, who was responsible for showing Stoop his works at the van Abbemuseum. Stoop was influenced by Soutine,de Kooning and van Velde and it shows, but what becomes clear after studying more works from him is that he deswtilled a style of his own from these influences.

the book below is now available at

pieter stoop

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Vincenc Kramar (1877-1960)

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Vincenc Kramar (1877–1960) was one of the first collectors worldwide to recognise the importance of Picasso and Braque’s Cubism. Without a doubt, his collection, a substantial portion of which is now held in the National Gallery of Prague, had a profound influence on the development of several decades of Czech Modern art, but most of all the importance of the collection is that Kramar was one of the first to focus on Modern Art , this way buildinh a collection of unprecedented quality. Since his death there were several occasion where his scollection was shown to the public. One of the occsions was at the Museum Boymans van Beuningen in 1968, where the Kramar collection was shown, The beautiful ( typical Sixties ) catalogue is now available at


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Klaus Staeck (1938)


I always thought that Klaus Staeck was just a publisher, but now i have learned him not only being an art publisher but also a graphic artist and lawyer. His bond with Joseph Beuys and a political engagemnet is well know, but him being an artist by himself not. It is always nice to encounter a Staeck publiction. Always on the border of being an artist multiple. has several Klaus Staeck publications available

Klaus Staeck grew up in the East German city of Bitterfeld. After passing the abitur in 1956 he moved to the West German city of Heidelberg where he lives down to the present day.

From 1957 until 1962 Mr Staeck studied law at Heidelberg, Hamburg, and Berlin before taking both state exams. He was admitted to the German bar in 1969.

Klaus Staeck is probably best known for his political poster art. He began to teach himself how to work as a graphic designer while pursuing his legal studies, creating posters, postcards, and flyers. In 1960, Mr Staeck became a member of Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD). In the late 1960s he took part in local politics in Heidelberg. Over the years he created three hundred different motifs, drawing from current political discussions. He took sides for the poor, the environment, and for peace, urging his countrymen to join him and to interfere in political affairs. In his campaigns he employed claims such as, e.g., Deutsche Arbeiter – die SPD will euch eure Villen im Tessin wegnehmen (“German workers: the SPD seeks to take away your villas in Tessin from you”), or Die Reichen müssen noch reicher werden – deshalb CDU (“The rich must become richer yet, therefore vote CDU”).

First he made woodcut prints, while from 1967 onward he changed to screen printing. Mr Staeck managed to finance his political actions by selling his artwork in Edition Tangente publishing house which later came to be known as Edition Staeck. He worked together with other political artists and writers, most notably Joseph Beuys, Panamarenko, Dieter Roth, Nam June Paik, Wolf Vostell, Daniel Spoerri, Günter Grass, Walter Jens, and Heinrich Böll who publicly spoke out in his favour. At the beginning of the 1970´s Staeck began his long time collaboration with Gerhard Steidl. So far, Klaus Staeck was sued in 41 cases for his artwork to be banned from public, to no avail.[2]

Since 1986 Mr Staeck has been visiting professor at Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. In April 2006 he was elected president of Berlin Akademie der Künste, succeeding to Adolf Muschg who had stepped down from this position late in 2005.

Klaus Staeck was awarded the first Zille prize for political graphic design in 1970, and the Großes Bundesverdienstkreuz in 2007.

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Oscar Lourens (1973)

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The following text comes from the site of Oscar Lourens. This is not the standard artist i follow , but one who’s works grow on you when you one have seen them on location.

Oscar Lourens employs photography and film as means to bring the reduced space back to human dimensions. For the exhibition ‘Vormen van aarden / Ways to root’ (Apeldoorn, 2005) he draws upon the principle of magnification: using a scaffold construction and whitewashed plywood plates, Lourens creates ‘a new house for Helene’. Referring to the live-sized pinewood-with-cloth models that Helene Kröller-Müller had built on the Ellenwoude mansion near Wassenaar, which functioned as studies for the to-be-built museum. Likewise, Oscar Lourens’ creation is a blown-up but otherwise exact replica of one of the models of La Lue. But this ‘new house for Helene’ isn’t a study for the future architecture, but a new artistic attempt to realize the miniature model in original size. In 2005, Oscar Lourens trades his role of artist for that of an architect. For the owners of the La Lue farmstead he designs a square tower of 5 by 5 by 12 metres. The tower with a pointed roof consists of three floors on which two people can cook (ground floor), live (first floor) and sleep (second floor). The dimensions are loosely based on existing rooms in the La Lue buildings. Important to Lourens is also the choice of a compact and slender tower that fits the landscape. The materials, style and position to the other buildings and the landscape are chosen accordingly. This is the first time Lourens creates a new architectonic space of his own design. Herewith, his miniature art has grown to true architecture in which the wandering spectator/visitor is able to truly experience the actual space. That the building has left the realm of art and entered that of architecture is also clear from the reactions of neighbours and visitors of La Lue. Many of them think the tower is a restored building that has been a part of the farmstead all along. The tower led me to ask Oscar Lourens whether he hadn’t rather chosen for the profession of an architect instead of being an artist. After an initial hesitation, he confirms. This hesitation is very understandable, because my question is like that of the farmer of the Lewis Caroll’s novel, who asked Mein Herr to accept the existing landscape as the best possible map. For is the tower of La Lue not the best means to truly take possession of architectonical space?

the book Possessing Space is available at

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