"...this amazing painting – one of the very greatest (and least noticed) masterpieces from the founding moment of modernism – is yet another experiment in the independent vitality of painted line and colour, as well as the uncountable force of nature. Almost lost within it – as in Undergrowth With Two Figures – are allusions to and repudiations of, the exhausted traditions of landscape...
...The view is therefore bipolar: simultaneously that of the rabbit and the hawk. Colours – wheat-gold, clay-brown – tease the eye with possibilities of making sense of a field or a hill, but then scramble them into chaos. The usual aesthetic markers – beauty and ugliness – have been made meaningless. In Tree Roots the painted forms rap against the visual panes of our windows, as if trying to crash through the glass. In other paintings from these last weeks in Auvers the interior of the field – green or gold stalks – occupies the entirety of the visual field like a curtain. Without a beginning or an end this infinity of growing matter closes over us. It’s the ultimate compression of heaven and earth, a live burial within the engulfing sea of creation." Simon Scama on Vincent van Gogh's Tree Roots and Trunk"
Tuesday, January 30, 2007
Tree Roots and Trunk - Vincent van Gogh
(Once I've finished the Power of Art, I promise to stop quoting Schama so much...)
Posted by tim atherton at 2:13 pm