Neo Rauch “Propaganda”

I find refreshing inspiration through the works of Neo Rauch. Although I have never seen His work in person I am drawn to them as if there is some kind of magnetic pull between his work and my imagination. There is a Dream like quality that I am drawn to similar to Salvador Dali or Frida Khalo.

Rauch’s works are characterized by an illustrative style with ambiguous shapes and an arbitration of forms in space as if the rules of perspective are completely disregarded however the figures and beasts he creates all seem to exist on the same plane. Rauch explains his work is preconceived before he starts, as the work develops he allows an organic composition to shift and change creating its own natural circulation. With this explanation I tend to agree with his sentiment that he is not a surrealist but it’s easy to see why critics would categorize him as such.

One element I appreciate about Rauch’s work is the hauntingly playful scenes he depicts. There is a juxtaposition between manual labor or middle class citizens and science fiction. In many of his scenes it seems as though an average citizen has made a startling discovery like in a 50’s science thriller. I find a subtle connection between the “discovery” in his paintings and my own. I try to create a moment of confusion for the characters in my paintings as the viewer tries to make that discovery as well. I find this especially true in my series of Navy Paintings, specifically “Wog Day”.

I often look to Neo Rauch for inspiration in my own work, although there may not be any clear reference I find his content helps guide me. It’s an interesting feeling viewing the works of an artist through the scope of the internet and creating a preconceived notion on what the art piece seems to be. It’s not until we see them in real life and get to enjoy the a painting in person that we fully get to experience it. Some works are overwhelming in person like Manet’s “Rag Picker”, while others are underwhelming.

I suppose the point of this weeks blog post is to go out and enjoy some art in person. Find your favorite artist and study their work there really is an emotional connection. That is one of the reasons I have selected my last three artist blogs, I still feel that initial response to experiencing those works at the 2017 Whitney Biennial. I would love the opportunity to have that experience with Rauch’s work.

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