Feb 22, 2020 · 4:29 PM

Date 1991 - 1992
Image dimensions 142 x 183 cm
Technique/material Oil and pigment on canvas
Credit Collection Museum Haus Konstruktiv
Donated by the artist
Inv. no. SK92016
Rudolf de Crignis

Painting # 92054

The Swiss painter, graphic artist, and sculptor Rudolf de Crignis (born 1948 in Winterthur, Switzerland, died 2006 in New York, USA) explored the effects of light, color, and space and how they interact. He was inspired by Concrete Art, Minimal Art, and Radical Painting. The character of his works subtly evokes an atmospheric value that is not based on a theoretical concept, but on a mental image.
De Crignis became well known in the Zurich art scene in the mid-1970s for his conceptual and figurative approaches to sculpture, photography, and installation. At the end of the 1970s, he then turned to painting. His artistic career underwent a radical change when he moved to New York in 1985. There, he developed a new artistic style that was inspired by Robert Ryman, Mark Rothko, and Ad Reinhardt. The compositions of his abstract pictorial works became increasingly defined by a tendency toward reduction and order, which he expressed in formations of stripes and bands as well as in his use of the diptych and choice of colors. From the beginning of the 1990s on, de Crignis concentrated on series of monochrome paintings. These cannot be classified as Concrete, theoretically based art, however, but as expressive and meditative acts of non-figurative painting. His works fascinate us through their complex layering process. In his square picture formats, we perceive the pulsing of ultramarine blue or black, created by the many nuances of the glazed layers of paint. Using pure painterly means to create such effects, these works are transformed into carriers of light that create illusionist depth.
His drawings also display an intensified reduction in which the artist used an eraser to delete lines. The issue of space is also an integral part of the installation-like arrangement of his series. While Rudolf de Crignis’ body of work spans from figurative to non-figurative art, his painterly method invites beholders to let their gaze and their associations run free.

Ursula Meier




With financial support by:

Lotteriefonds Canton of Zurich

Baugarten Stiftung
Ernst Göhner Stiftung
Dr. Adolph Streuli-Stiftung
Stiftung Kunstsammlung Albert und Melanie Rüegg



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Feb 22, 2020
4:15:00 PM CET