Painting : Untitled (Pierre Soulages - 1950)

Title : "Untitled"

Artist : Pierre Soulages

Year : 1950

Lithography.

Dimension : 66 x 50,5 cms.

In this lithography work, Pierre Soulages expresses his appreciation of the constructive and monumental essence of form. Through wide strokes forming a vertical plane and a combination of horizontal planes and transparent strokes, the overall form of the painting is like an abstraction of a monument or building figure. However, this pure abstract painting can also be seen solely through the beauty of the formal visual elements. The rhythm of the strong black line with a variation of the soft transparent line, along with the red accent on the hole on top, gives this work both a sturdy and soft character.

With Hans Hartung, Soulages was one of the more prominent abstract painters of the School of Paris in 1950’s. Soulages also travelled and exhibited in the United States and Japan. With such a reputation, many of his works were exhibited in American museums. The tendency of visual idioms in Soulages’ works is consistent with the expressionist abstract spirit the developed in the United States at the time, especially the spontaneity of Frans Kline’s lines. Soulages’ works do not have titles as well, but as a marker he only refers to date, month, and year of the work’s creation.

Like other works in the collection of the National Gallery of Indonesia, this painting presents a continuity of uninterrupted lines with simple and clear colours. It elicits strength, steadfastness, and honesty.