Meer Kupperman, Chaya



Oil on canvas
90 x 90 cm.

Chaya Kupperman, who splits her time between Italy and her native Netherlands, crafts thick, rich compositions that remind the viewer of landscapes and street views while remaining staunchly and seductively abstract. She cites the influence of traditional Dutch landscape painting, whose horizontal vistas and gray-blue skies are major components of her work. Beneath these fringes of pale azure, she unleashes bold tones in overlapping and intersecting swaths, some applied in layered, diagonal brushstrokes, others tightly hemmed in by rectangular forms that suggest people and buildings.

Kupperman expertly avoids letting her work be pinned down as figurative, however, instead letting it float in an indeterminate zone, just as her most saturated tones hover against their softer surroundings. This intriguing quality is evocative and appealing, allowing the viewer to engage fully with each piece on their own terms, particularly as Kupperman confounds distinctions between foreground and background, object and setting. She trains our vision on the intricacies of pure chromatic interplay, the rich textures of her densely impastoed oil paints, and the multitude of images and sensations they conjure.

Concept and thoughts
My work is about the journey as a child wandering around in the landscape. I make use of photos to refresh my memory and better mimic the colors and atmosphere. This journey, reflected in a discovery of perspective and variations of color against the ever-changing liquidity of the sky, is one of the main sources for the invented forms and symbolism included in my paintings.

Earth with all its different substances became a metaphor for life and how I relate to my own body and how the body is an instrument in experiencing life. The awareness is reflected in the physicality of the brushwork where the journey starts at the bottom of the painting and takes the viewer along hidden obstacles into an imaginary space on the path of the roads.

The use of the materials, oils, oil crayon, raw pigment and graphite was to me the ultimate tool for direct expression, which also resembled the way children work with visual tools. I discovered a symbolism in the work that was not only related to geometrical and organic forms, but color suddenly gave a new sense of drama to the paintings I hadn’t discovered before. It mattered that I singled out something more mysterious and personal. In the size of the landscape, it began to develop its own mood, which was an extra dimension that was new to me. The film of oil paint reflects an extra dimension and liveliness on the picture plane and all that was working and interesting.

I intend to push expression, symbolism, narrative, and the translucency of light and its contrasting darkness even further so that I can invent and integrate my own system of thoughts, experiments and investigations into the picture plane and continuously develop my own personal language.

Meer werken van Chaya Kupperman 1965