Ralph Gelbert is renowned for his large-scale Abstract Expressionist landscapes.
His painterly representations of places such as the Rhine Valley, the Alps and the Irish countryside convey the rhythms of these unique landscapes as they are sensed and remembered
There’s a reason why painter Ralph Gelbert’s latest exhibition — in collaboration with SLEEK and Berlin Art Consulting — is entitled Beyond the Visible. Rather than painting landscapes in precise detail, Gelbert captures an essence of a place — the feeling or memory of it, almost like a fluid poetic imprint on the brain as opposed to a perfect snapshot. Gelbert’s painterly representations of places such as the Rhine Valley, the Alps and the Irish countryside convey the rhythms of these unique landscapes as they are remembered, or sensed. He translates these memories and motions into energetic brushstrokes that capture all the wild, fluctuating currents of a particular place — the sound of the waves, the green of the trees, the deepest dark of the earth, the sharpest edge of a cliff, the glint of sun setting.
Working mostly in oils on large canvases, Gelbert’s paintings have been compared to those by the Abstract Expressionists — and it’s easy to see why. There’s a spirited unconsciousness to the way in which he liberally applies paint to canvas. It’s dripped, splashed and poured as opposed to delicately applied, rippling with the vigour and verve of the natural world. Similarly, colour is integral to his abstract renderings of landscape. His paintings pop with a lively use of shades: butter yellow, acid green, cobalt, scarlet, aqua and magenta all feature in his brilliantly-hued abstractions.
The exhibition continues until 27 October at Torstraße 138, 10119 Berlin.