We are pleased to announce the opening of the exhibition ‘Opaque' - new encaustic paintings by Louis Renzoni. This series is based upon a particular type of still life painting that developed during the 16th and 17th centuries in Flanders and the Netherlands. It is part of a classical genre that contained allegorical symbols of death as a reminder of the brevity of life. It confronts the vanity of worldly things through subtle signs of elapsing decay.
Renzoni's off angle objects placed irregularly create a setting that is unstable and ominous. In the painting ‘Long Shadow', a bowl of grapes illuminates a cell-like space casting a threatening dark shadow that portend the inevitability of their decay. His preference for oblique lines, and the constant opposition of light and dark, creates the compositional tensions that exude in these paintings. Small areas of glowing light seem on the verge of being completely overwhelmed by darkness. Renzoni is forever drawing attention to that which cannot be seen.
Adding to the anxious atmosphere is Renzoni's technique of painting in layers, sanding down, then repainting, a process that obliterates certain detail but leaves smoky shadows in the background. This feeling of disorientation, of not being grounded, is the thread that runs throughout all of Louis Renzoni's artwork. He is an artist who creates settings that are black, edgy and voyeuristic, which the viewer enters into each time with a sense of trepidation.