|Non-Pinito-painted portraits / Etti Chechover at Municipal art gallery, Rishon Le-zion|
Etti Chechover lives and paints in Kfar Vradim. This context has significance for the distance from the center of activity / discourse and the display of contemporary Israeli art.
A quick look at the small portraits she has painted in recent years reveals that more than the portraits 'conversing' with local Israeli art, they express a long conversation of the painter with great masters, artists who lived in Europe and especially in the Netherlands, where she lived and exhibited for many years.
Small portraits holding at both ends: in the tradition of classical painting and in the way of contemporary painting.
The paintings in the exhibition belong to the series 'Non Finito', a series of paintings that are seemingly unfinished. Since 2008, Chechover has painted on pieces of wood she finds, on torn pieces of paper, wrappers of cereal. The choice of simple, everyday substrate far from the classic substrate for painting, indicates the time they were made- contemporary. She allows herself to useseemingly take the platform lightly, moving from the white canvas to new and available options. In this way another connection is created between past and present. This is a painting reminiscent of 'What and How' was painted in the past and yet it is all here and now.
During her studies at Bezalel, Chechover was exposed to the history of art and the paintings of the great masters, and especially from books. Traveling to Italy and the Netherlands and living in Europe for many years, allowed for a face-to-face encounter with works of the past. The way it was painted impressed her. For many years she has been painting portraits, some of them were drown from famous paintings. It is an attempt to capture something of the expression of the characters. She looks for a long time at a painted portrait and then 'brings it up' out of herself, creating a dialogue with the character, a dialogue that allows her to get to the 'here and now'.
Some of the characters have a melancholy expression of suffering, others indicate supreme / religious pleasure,some have a glassy look that reveals nothing, there are portraits that fade almost completely. Did she succeed?
Did the character fade away on its way to us? What is left of that character? Chechover acts as a kind of introspective in an attempt to capture the expression of the individual from an image. It is a confrontation with the history of art at the forefront of doing which does not resemble a distant, implied influence.
'Gallery Wall' contains groups of paintings composed of dozens of portraits painted on lace napkins, inner cereal wrappers, planks and other scraps. Most of them were not painted as expected - on canvas. It is a contemporary, seemingly everyday encounter, one that holds many decades of painting years, pictorial skill and great respect for the great master.
Among the paintings shines one figure that does not belong to portraits from famous paintings.
An echoing open-ended question: Has anything changed? The background, as well as the serious expression, stand out in their diversity and present
the possibility of a new pictorial conversation.
Curator: Efi Gen
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