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  • Writer's pictureMaria Bourbou

SUBLIME / Maria Bourbou, Luc Ewen, Robert Hall

Group Exhibition: Sublime, Fellner Louvighny Art Space 2021

The exhibition is the result of a very personal concept that has taken shape over the years. A few years ago, there was a large exhibition at the Centre Pompidou in Metz on the subject of the sublime, which was dedicated to the whole and historical range of the subject.

In a narrower sense, I was interested in how photography and painting can capture

something that is (almost) free of narratives, that leaves us speechless, so to speak. Being in nature and landscape, experiencing the elemental and feeling one's own creativeness. And in the best case, free of philosophical or psychological references.

I found this experience translated into artistic form with the three artists selected one after

the other. First of all with Luc Ewen, who produced very large-format photographs in a rather elaborate process of image making. The ideal light for him and the search for the desired distance and angle of view made him visit the locations several times to capture the right moment. The results are of great clarity and stillness and show us a power and beauty of nature, in its cyclical growth but also in its decay, that makes us humble. The pictures were taken in Myanmar and Luxembourg.

What Luc achieves with abundance as a motif, Maria Bourbou works out with a different

view. She depicts the barrenness of the landscapes in the Azores in more close-up views.

They are elementary views of absence. Moments without past or future, far from civilisation,

and in their strength almost only experienceable through letting go, surrender. The simple

creatureliness of nature is transferred to the viewer if he is willing to open himself to it.

Through the technique of grain in photography, Maria reinforces the daydreaming, thought-

free gaze.

The two photographers worked in black and white, which makes sense because, simply put, in colour it would be too much reproduction in itself. Art is created in the eye of the

beholder and the absence of colour suits him here.

I asked Robert Hall to join the two, who last year developed an intrinsically minimalist,

borderline abstract painting. Here, too, it is about landscapes, about the sublime. His

gestural emphasis on the horizontal, the use of colour, have a strong power of suggestion.

We create the landscapes through the inner eye, from memory or the idea of vastness. The

use of colour never makes it real and prevents clear images. Basic feelings or experiences are evoked such as longing, losing oneself, infinity or even the force of nature.

Text by Hans Fellner, Art Curator

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