Arie van Geest, Tableau Mourant, 98 aquarellen
Haags Gemeentemuseum
Mariette Josephus Jitta
23 x 15,5 cm, 40 p.
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Move mouse cursor over above picture to see "Tableau
Mourant - Nr. 78
Water color / Indian ink on paper, 1984, 16,6 x 14,4 cm.
Collection Rijksmuseum Vincent van Gogh, Amsterdam

Text exhibition catalogue (partly quoted): • Haags Gemeentemuseum, The Hague, December 13, 1986 - February 01, 1987
• Rijksmuseum Vincent van Gogh, Amsterdam, April, 24 - May 31, 1987          

Tableau Mourant

An artist is always stimulated to paint by visible things, things he has perceived in reality or in an interiorized world, things he himself has made - paintings, sketches, doodles - as well as paintings made by others. These elements are intertwined.

For Tableau Mourant Arie van Geest was inspired by Van Gogh's Man with a Rake after Millet's painting. Van Gogh spoke of continuing and of translating. It is a translating into his own idiom, in which is embedded a continuing with an existing painting, and with the work that emerges under his own hand: the outcome is a metamorphosis of a 'page' of Millet.

The same kind of thing happens with Arie van Geest. In the succession of sheets new images emerge, as in a chemical process - images that overlap, supersede one another and re-emerge, first within the contours, enclosing the figure like a membrane: forms like diamonds, sharp as spearheads, an embryonic figure, waving lines being cypress and women alike.
But also the field is rumpled, the lines and colours do not evoke concise images, they merely suggest and increasingly evoke a chaos and unrest in which also the figure is absorbed.

Only one sign distinguishes itself from the brushstrokes and scratches: a zigzag, gouged into the figure, a last quotation, the road without end in Vincent van Gogh's Cornfield with Crows.

Mariette Josephus Jitta.
© Arie van Geest