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Muldoon Elder

It's almost unbelievable until you see it. Andreas Nottebohm has given up the use of pigment yet maintained a deeper, richer and more subtly implicit sense of color in his newest pure metal paintings than any rainbow could have provided. And in doing so, he has taken painting to a marvelous, entirely new dimension.

Whenever one looks at new art for the first time, its originality and uniqueness is rarely grasped. Instead, thoughts of artistic parallels or sources that lie behind it are what tend to come to mind. But this was not true when I first laid eyes upon the pure metal paintings of Andreas Nottebohm. My instant impression was that this was something absolutely unique, something wholly original, something extremely graceful, lyrical and subtle, and at the same time, overwhelmingly powerful.

The beauty of his approach is its straightforward simplicity. There are no tricks of painterly technique to infringe on the purity of his statement, no distracting pigment to momentarily please then quickly ebb away. And within that simplicity lies a gorgeous, almost unimaginable complexity that continues to renew, shift direction and expand itself upon further viewings.

Images are only perceived through the courtesy of light, in darkness there is nothing to be seen: and in these remarkable paintings a unique, shifting, illuminating dance of light is both medium and message, it is their very vehicle, their essence, their substance. It is only after that initial, first impact that one is slowly aware, through the unfolding waves of subtle parallels to the history of art, that these glowing, carved metal wonders sum up so many of the aesthetic ideas of the great masters; and yet ultimately the first impression is the correct one, they stand on their own, not as ideas or as historical references but as magical, spine-tingling objects.

People say the soul cannot be seen. These are souls that can be seen; and seen as profoundly as the viewer's soul will allow his eyes to see.

Muldoon Elder, Founder, The Vorpal Gallery

 

   
 
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