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Rienold Postma (1950)

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A local celebrity in Friesland, but still not known outside this province of the Netherlands is Rienold Postma. Thom Mercuur who initiated the Museum Belvedere was an admirer and he organized several exhibitions with this painter , who is a master in smaller paintings. With a minimal composition he  transforms his small works into a work with maximum exposure and effect. Just look at these two examples

left : “a girl struggling with her sweater” and on the Right “Two girlfriend walking on the dyke”. These are examples of his art and i think they are impressive. When you leaf trough the book on Postma ( available at www.ftn-books.com) you will soon experience the power of these small paintings. These are realistic paintings that are on the border of being completely abstract.

The works by Rienold Postma can be seen at the Museum Belvedere near Heerenveen.

https://www.museumbelvedere.nl

reinold postma

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Günter Wintgens (1951)

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Not much information to be found on Günter Wintgens, but still he has had quite a few exhibitions all over Europe according to his biography and now is selling on Saatchi art.

Picture planes in Günter Wintgens’s work Pictorial motifs with diaphanous planes form a central aspect of Günter Wintgens’s work. Their optical transparency, intuiting or understanding the partially concealed planes, plays with visitors’ curiosity. It allows them to recognize several pictorial planes at once. Hence, they perceive the amount of time that has passed from one stage of the creative process to the next, and are able to guess, to a certain extent, the history behind the creation of this picture. For the fragmented motifs, made up of countless, particle-like brushstrokes across a mono- or polychromatic ground, the passage of time is also an important aspect. Although it also applies to the process of creating the painting, it is mainly true of the element of instability—the apparent motion evoked by the painting’s shimmering texture, and often reinforced by its format, the tondo. Also important is the aspect of communicating information. Each bit is legible by itself, but because the individual planes of information are assembled and layered on top of each other, visitors are offered a new, conceptual projection surface. Yet another aspect is clearly of a spiritual nature: the constantly recurring question about the real essence of things. Behind a veil both delicate and tear-resistant, the answer to this question stoutly resists comprehension.

www.ftn-books.com has an early Wintgens catalogue available

wintgens

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Luciana Matalon (1937)

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Perhaps the true importance of Luciana Matalon is that she initiated the founding of an art space in Milano as a platform for young aspiring artist to have their first exhibitions.

http://www.fondazionematalon.org

Luciana Matalon was born in the Veneto region but moved to Milan where she made her debut in 1968. As a multifaceted artist she dedicated herself to painting, scuplture and the creation of jewellery.

Her artstic studies took place mainly at Milan’s Accademia di Brera and during periods spent in a variety of foreign countries. Since 1966 she has taken part in numerous exhibitions and has organized her own in Europe, America and Japan.

In 2000 the artist set up a self-titled foundation in Milan, where she aspired to create a new museum space to become an international crossroads of new ideas and new artistic orientations. Moreover, since 2006 she has been promoting the Premio Beniamino Matalon per le Arti Visive (Beniamino Matalon Prize for Visual Arts), which has a duration of two years, with the aim of stimulating artists under the age of 35 to produce work that is meaningful and worthy, whilst supporting them in their  path of artistic growth.

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http://www.ftn-books.com has the 1981 Matalon catalogue for her EP galerie presentation available.

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New Business Card FTN books & Art

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Some recent changes made it necessary to translate these changes into a new business card. The most important one being two new email addresses. One personal one and the other for the FTN books & Art contacts. So here is all the new business information to contact me and keep track of my activities, the daily blog and additions to my inventory.

Wilfried van den Elshout / FTN books

Veursestraatweg 106c

2265CG Leidschendam,  the Netherlands

www.ftn-books.com

www.ftn-blog.com

new email : wilfriedvandenelshout@gmail.com

new email : ftnbooksandart@gmail.com

 

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Iris van Dongen (1975)

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About the same time the Hadassah Emmerich exhibition was held at the GEM museum, Roel Arkesteijn curated another iconic exhibition. It was the NOX NOCTIS exhibition by Iris van Dongen. van Dongen has become a force in modern dutch painting. Her symbolic/dark paintings remind me of the best by Gustav Klimt, but they are certainly not copies.

These are highly original works of art that would grace any modern art collection. A nice insight movie by HOLLANDSE MEESTERS show van Dongen at work in her studio:

And for the iconic Nox Noctis catalogue please visit http://www.ftn-books.com

 

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Hadassah Emmerich (1974)

 

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The first time i heard about the artist Hadassah Emmerich was at the time she had an exhibition at GEM. Curated by Roel Arkesteijn this exhibition was one of the first at the GEM museum. The Neighbor of the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag and dedicated to contemporary art. I think her paintings are overwhelming, extremely attractive, but far too exuberant to add to any private collection beside a museum collection. Still i admire her paintings, because there is no artist alike and her works are highly original.

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In her paintings, work on paper and painterly installations Hadassah Emmerich interweaves varied themes such as identity and the body, representations of the exotic and the dialogue between abstraction and figuration.
Emmerich selects material from a variety of sources including vintage photography books, texts, advertising and art historical reference books, which are fused together through a process of photomontage which is then transferred onto the canvas using a combination of painting and printing.
Negotiating a universe where tropical colors merge effortlessly with cold grey tones, where graphic silhouettes inhabit ephemeral spaces and where references to modernist painting are incorporated into urban space, Emmerich creates a fictionalized narrative in which ‘multiculturalism’ is questioned in a painterly sense.
Displaying monumental and immersive qualities, the viewer is confronted with a visceral immediacy, urging to engage conceptually as well as physically. In continuing the legacy of female ‘pop’ artists such as Evelyn Axell or Angela Garcia, Emmerich pursues a practice that combines a bold visual language with an investigation into the undercurrent of visual culture.

http://www.ftn-books.com has the GEM publication on Hadassah Emmerich now available now available.

emmerich

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Constant Permeke (1886-1952)

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Like van Gogh and his fellow country man Josef Cantré, Constant Permeke was fascinated with farmers and workers. Inspired by these men and woman he made some beautiful impressive paintings in a style which was highly original and recognizable. Brown, blacks and some sand colors painted on a canvas made some of the most impressive art from Belgium from the early 20th century.

Beside a gifted painter, he was also an impressive sculptor. Inspired by the same subjects his sculptures seem to be even more abstract thatn his paintings. Of course the sahpe one can recognize but there is also an abstract quality with these sculptures. In the Netherlands not many Permeke art can be seen, but there is a tremendous painting in the collections of the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag (Kunstmuseum) and the Kroller  Muller museum.

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The following Permeke titles are available at www.ftn-books.com

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Menno Bauer (1949)

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Here is the text that can be found on the Menno Bauer web site. It explains the works and methods Bauer uses.

Menno Bauer is interested in the movements of dancers. “In my paintings”, says Bauer, ‘I set everything in motion. I want the figures in the painting to dance. I want to show that everything is alive and infused with tension. In fact, I am also dusting off images that already exist. He is not only inspired by Van Maanen’s ballets, but also by famous historic paintings. They too contain scenes into which Bauer breathes new life. His reasoning is simple. In a painting, everything is still, motionless, because it is all painted. Nonetheless, you can in stil the suggestion of motion. The challenge is to make that illusion convincing.
It should be said that Menno Bauer does not work in a realistic style. Against a background of broad planes of colour- an agressive red versus a friendly green -, his figures, loosely contoured in black, dance, walk and fall, imprisoned in a world of their own. Here, just as in a filmclip of Johan Cruyff slowly flying past, its utterly unclear just what these people are doing or where they are.
In Menno Bauer’s eyes, the figures inhabiting the sometimes renowned paintings that he uses as his starting points are the theatrical performers acting out their roles. The undefined space in wich they find themselves is hence their stage, a place that can be altered into all manner of environments by way of changing the decors. The actors that Bauer employs in his paintings are professionals in the art of overstatement. Cheer or drama are applied in thick layers, out to persuade their audience. Moreover, what these characters are acting out is not real. Bauer finds excitement in making use of this exaggeration, these emphatic, acted-out gestures, in order to approach the illusion of real gesture or movement.

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There is one Bauer publication available at www.ftn-books.com

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Kitaj (1932-2007)

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Robert Brooks Kitaj was born in the US but his art is closely related to the British Pop Art. I am writing this blog because i recently acquired a german catalogue on his exhibition at the Kunsthalle Dusseldorf and i was impressed. Later i learned that Kitaj received a lot of criticism on his art as the press slaughtered his exhibition at the Tate gallery in 1994. Her is what i found on Wikipedia

A second retrospective was staged at the Tate Gallery in 1994. Critical reviews in London were almost universally negative. British press savagely attacked the Tate exhibit, calling Kitaj a pretentious poseur who engaged in name dropping. Kitaj took the criticism very personally, declaring that “anti-intellectualism, anti-Americanism, and anti-Semitism” had fueled the vitriol. Despite the bad reviews, the exhibition moved to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and afterwards to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in 1995. His second wife, Sandra Fisher died from hyperacute haemorrhagic leuco-encephalitis in 1994, shortly after his exhibition at the Tate Gallery had ended. He blamed the British press for her death, stating that “they were aiming for me, but they got her instead.” David Hockney concurred and said that he too believed the London art critics had killed Sandra Fisher.[14] Kitaj returned to the US in 1997 and settled in Los Angeles, near his first son. “When my Wife died”, he wrote to Edward Chaney, “London died for me and I returned home to California to live among sons and grandsons – It was a very good move and now I begin my 3rd and (last?) ACT! hands across The Sea.” Three years later he wrote: “I grow older every day and rather like my hermit life.” The “Tate War” and Sandra’s death became a central themes for his later works: he often depicted himself and his deceased wife as angels. In Los Angeles No. 22 (Painting-Drawing) the beautiful young (and naked) girl records the shadow of her aged lover (on whose lap she sits) in a pose directly taken from the Scots Grand Tourist David Allan’s Origin of Painting. The latter was included by Ernst Gombrich in his 1995 National Gallery exhibition (and catalogue) on Shadows so that Kitaj would have seen it two years before he left England for ever. 

Personally i think the critics are wrong. Kitaj deserves his place among the great European Pop Art artists and the future exhibitions that will include his works will probably prove me right. Some Kitaj catalogues are availableat http://www.ftn-books.com

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Joachim Grommek (1957)

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Joachim Grommek, Master of Arts of Free Art/ Film at HBK Braunschweig (Professor: Malte Sartorius), Germany, in 1982 has mainly shown in German and European institutions and galleries since 1987, among them important solo shows like “Malerei 300” at the Städtische Galerie Wolfsburg, Wolfsburg, Germany in 2011. His geometric-abstract, illusionary work in perfection lays varies the topic of authentic image and copy like the ancient Trompe-l’œils, always asking for a second look. Grommek’s work though is reflecting art history and prominent artists like Kasimir Malewitsch, Piet Mondrian, Blinky Palermo or Robert Ryman.

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This is how the Taubert gallery describes the works by Joachim Grommek. They have a nice selection in stock. This blog on Grommek is written on the occasion of the purchase for FTN-art of a beautiful impressive diamond shaped work : STAR IV, 2006 (Black Diamond). You really have to study his works from very close up. It appears these are not tapes nor raw chipped wood material, but literally everything….lines , wood, tapes …is painted. Materials used, acrylic paint, lack, wood , special paints…the result a fascinating work of art that impresses with its composition, but in the meantime is a technical painters masterpiece.

The works by Grommek can be found in numerous German museums and ao. the Centraal Museum / Utrecht

here is the text from the book TILT:

Grommek’s pictures have an extraordinarily immediate visual presence, despite their comparatively small size. Whereas they seem rigorously minimalistic in terms of both areal composition and chromatic clarity, there is still something provisional and unfinished about them. More like tantalising intermediates, they seem to imply that the artist has not yet decided which area should be superimposed on which. Patches of bald fibreboard are visible in places, as are strips of adhesive tape.

But nothing is what it seems in these works. Although Grommek does indeed use standard industrially laminated fibreboard as a ground, the grey-brown speckled areas that the viewer takes for unpainted fibreboard turn out to be no less painted albeit with deceptive verisimi|itude -than all the other areas. Even the brightly coloured transparent »adhesive tape« turns out to be lacquer which, perfectly applied layer upon layer, creates the illusion of overlapping strips of plastic tape. An abstract, »unrepresentational« picture by Grommek, therefore, is actually the result of a highly representational style of painting, with what it represents being its own materiality.

Once the temptation to tear off the strips of non-exlstent adhesive tape has been resisted, the viewer can step back a few paces and in doing so go back to the beginning and to the play of shapes and colours. The tension remains, just as the contradictions between the reality seen, painted and represented remain unresolved.