Preview Thursday September 9, 6-9 pm
Antwerp – Zeno X Gallery is very pleased to announce the exhibition ‘Airy’, a solo show with new
works by Raoul De Keyser. Next to twelve new paintings, two earlier works will be exhibited.
Installed at the entrance space of the gallery is ‘Zevende Linnen Doos’, an important work from 1971.
Between 1966 and 1971, whilst exploring the spatial limitations of the pictorial surface, De Keyser
made a series of seven linen boxes, each comprising a wooden frame on which canvas was
stretched and painted. While the first linen boxes bore the familiar figurative elements of a garden
hose or a tent, the late ones as ‘Zevende Linnen Doos’ consist primarily of a juxtaposition of larger
autonomous areas of colour spread around the sides of the box. The spatiality and tangibility of the
work bear references to Minimal art, but the green surfaces and the framing white lines also recall
football, favorite sport of De Keyser, and link it to Pop Art.
Next to ‘Untitled’, a monumental geometric painting from 1988, are twelve new paintings on view.
Small in scale, they are painted with various materials as acryl, oil watercolour, charcoal and gesso.
Vivid colours, such as the yellows and reds in the work ‘Airy’ or the deep blues in ‘Passage’, are
altered with more washed out and grubby colours as in ‘One’ and ‘Again’. Intriguing fragmentary
forms and lines appear, painted with rapid and sparse brush strokes, that continue to surprise and
at the same time feel so familiar in De Keyser’s work, like the irregularly-shaped ‘islands’ in ‘Fire’.
The seemingly nonchalance with which these forms are painted and the dinginess that shimmers
through the different drawing and paint layers contrast with the supposedly clear pictorial structure.
Raoul De Keyser is one of the most important European painters of the past decades, and has had
important solo shows at De Pont, Tilburg, Kunstverein St. Gallen, Whitechapel, London, The
Renaissance Society, Chicago, S.M.A.K., Ghent, Kunsthalle Bern, Museu Serralves, Porto,
Kunstmuseum Luzern, Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin and Kunstmuseum Bonn among others.
His work can be found in the permanent collections of Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco,
Museum Ludwig, Köln, S.M.A.K., Ghent, Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburg, Whitechapel Gallery,
London, Art Institute of Chicago, De Pont, Tilburg, Museum of Fine Arts, Ghent and many private