For this exhibition, the artist’s first solo showing outside the German-speaking world, Egil presents works that form a painterly spiral between himself, that is, his mind and his body or his inner and outer existences, and the work of two of his artistic heroes: Ernst Ludwig Kirchner and Paul Cézanne.
The artist has said that he loves the rhyming in paint of the white legs and breasts in his versions of Cézanne’s Bathers with the white lines of the mountainscape and tree he has taken from Kirchner’s woodcut Der Baum (1920). Likewise, the changing blue sky that looms behind his bathers and the haunting blue tree that is repeated again and again in this exhibition, which is taken from the Kirchner painting Der Blaue Baum (1920) and which Egil sees as an expression of the artist’s inner life, are rhymed to form another motif that the viewer can trace through this exhibition. These connections make a spiral that is at once painterly, conceptual and poetic, one where images overlay images and are left to vibrate unresolved, neither superseding nor submitting.
An exhibition catalogue including an essay by CASSIUS&Co. Director Fraser Brough will be published alongside the exhibition.
Born in St. Gallen and now working outside Lucerne, Raphael Egil achieves a magic in his work that is often closer to music than language. With loose, easy, graceful brushwork that is in fact the result of a hard-won mastery, he makes fresh and alive the canonical genres of painting: portrait, landscape, still-life. He is an artist who is convinced of the power of painting, and who, in work after work, finds new ways of persuading us to agree.
CASSIUS&Co. is a new gallery focusing on art and rare books of the 20th and 21st centuries. The exhibition Raphael Egil: Paintings will mark the opening of its first exhibition space, where art and rare books are presented side-by-side in an intimate setting. The gallery’s program of artists’ books, rare poetry and literature as well as art by selected masters of the postwar period is presented in support of its Contemporary exhibitions, which focus on new European painting.