Shapes of Strokes
Painting on a painting by Dieter Küppers (1950–1999)
Shapes of Strokes follow up thematically on the series of paintings Shapes of Time I. and II. With this painting, I painted the upper half black, covering the illusionary perspectival depiction of a landscape and the mood of the lighting achieved through colour, and highlighted only the painter’s relief handwriting with white line. I only followed the shapes of the colour as a kind of base material, and even though I could not see the original continuation of the motive through the black overpaint, it, nevertheless, emerged eventually in the white lining, which was a very interesting moment. It happened because Dieter Küppers used a dual painting technique – he painted with a spatula and with a brush. He used the spatula to paint the mountains, modelling them structurally to give them a hard look, and the soft strokes of a brush to paint the surrounding clouded sky. The work is then a graphical image of his handwriting as a painter, set on the background of a landscape motive. The frame is done in the same way with the white lining highlighting its decorative relief. The whole upper half of the painting then gives off the impression of being submerged in a kind of black and white emulsion of a graphic interface. Shapes of Strokes is a second work of the broader concept where the pure handwriting of the painter is highlighted and confronted with an illusionary depiction of what the painter achieved through colour.