Artwork Analysis > To the discovery of a work by Bernard Réquichot

To the discovery of a work by Bernard Réquichot

Bernard Réquichot, Untitled, 1960, ink and gouache on cardboard, 70.6 x 104 c.m.


We are looking at a painting by Bernard Réquichot which he painted during the last few years of his life. At first, we are surprised by the depth of the intensity that radiates from it.  This intensity seems to appear from the motif itself, the spirals for which the work in finesse shows a play of volume and light which are inseparable one from the other.

The spirals are not as thick as the lines, nevertheless they evolve in the width of their springs depending on whether the painter wanted to express clarity or obscurity.  These spirals can also be assembled between each other like a cluster, rather than being isolated , and create a dynamic of volume.

It is the result of a creation of Bernard Réquichot around the dynamic of spirals.

Here the spirals are vertical and diagonal as if reaching for the “sky”.  This dynamic seems to stop at two-thirds of the painting except for some of them that don’t stop and seem to climb out of the edge of the paper.  From this verticality comes a circle that might evoke floral elements that spin in a spiral.

The profound intensity is underlined by white gouache spots resembling water paint in some ways.  They bring a touch of transparency.

This white transparency underlines the frontier between the (more or less) full areas which are the spirals and the empty areas that are touches of gouache. They give a second reading of the painting by focalizing either on the full areas or on the empty ones. In either case, we are struck by the depth radiating from it.

The magic of this painting doesn’t end there.  As we distance ourselves from it, the expression of this depth takes our gaze to infinity and to our pleasure of dreaming….