May 30, 2012

Roger Raveel

When I get contacted with the question..." maybe a photo for This is Belgium?"... I consider myself very lucky, and especially so this time not only because Roger Raveel truly is a great artist but also because the artist, 91 years old (!),  looks great flanked by these two lovely ladies, both named Chris. The picture is taken by the wife of the master in front of a gate in a shade of green which, I believe, regularly shows up in his works.
"Roger Raveel was born on 15th july 1921 in Machelen-aan-de-Leie, a village near Ghent and he is regarded as one of the most important Belgian artists since World War II. Contemporary and timeless, his work is difficult to place in any single art history category. Indeed, it discourages any approach that is one-sided. The breeding ground for Raveel's art is his immediate environment, which however, does not imply that it is only limited to the local. In his paintings, drawings, objects and installations, the world around him acquires universality, as men, women, plants, a bicycle trailer, advertisements or technology are all seen as being part of time and space. A particularly fascinating aspect of his work is his use of a varied plastic language. Frequently contrasting styles or  ways of painting create a tension in his work that leads the viewer to discover a new reality".