There’s a Japanese essence to this piece by Spanish artist, Pere Galera, that conjures up ancient martial arts and a Zen-like harmony. With seemingly just a few spontaneous brush-marks, this dark twisting form manages to feel animated yet static at the same time.
The shape thrusts its way around the canvas yet still communicates a sense of composure, which is a tricky balance to find.
Pere hails from the fire of Barcelona but spends his time within the permafrost of Norway, so perhaps this contradiction in national identity supports his work.
His Catalonian spirit is seamlessly blended with a Scandinavian mixer. He’s an absinthe on ice.
Although not technically an emerging artist, as he’s been working for over 30 years, this new series of Eastern-inspired canvases feel notably different from his previous pieces.
He explains why:
“My paintings are inspired by Zen calligraphy. I am fascinated by its simplicity, flow and precision. I am particularly interested in large-format ‘shodo’ calligraphy performed on the floor with large and heavy brushes.“
Zen calligraphy is unusual in that the characters depicted are less important than how they have been created. So, if a single character translates as ‘to sit’, the character itself should convey a sense of gravity as you encounter it. And this can only be achieved following years of training covering mind, body and soul.
Ultimately, the Zen approach creates a moment in time whereby your present is shaped by a single interaction.
“My main motivation is to embody the spontaneous and unique moment, the total experience of a ‘here and now’ on the canvas.
In the spontaneous and immediate we feel the germ of something purer.
“My wish is that the recipient is instinctively encouraged or revitalised by this movement, without even knowing how. A painting only lives through the person who interacts with it.”