When doing some research on Walter Swennen, whose latest paintings are currently exhibited at Rosemarie Schwarzwälder´s Galerie nächst St. Stephan, one soon finds his dictum „A painting is always an image of a painting“. This is something people tend to forget when looking at fine art, or what even painters sometimes forget when entangled in painterly problems. But keeping this maxim in mind greatly enlarges our perceptive horizons, respectively one´s range of operation. Walter Swennen manages to take heed of this, anyway: his paintings appear simultaneously spontaneous and experimental - but without lacking in depth or substance; nothing that´s easily arrived at.
„Tambula malembe“, the exposition´s title, refers to a song by the Congolese musician Vadio Mambenga, and can by translated as „allons-y doucement“. A phrase that Walter Swennen, in turn, freely associates with Lester Young´s swing piece „easy does it“. This exhibitions adds up to more than the sum of its individual parts; but still I can imagine quite well (and quite hypothetically) to have each single painting hanging in my living room. (Maybe as a reminder of „A painting is always an image of a painting“, maybe just because I like them.)
Galerie nächst St. Stephan Rosemarie Schwarzwälder
1: links: Amiral, 135 x 180 x 3,5cm, Öl auf Leinwand, 2018; rechts: King´s Fish, 40 x 50 x 2,5cm, Öl auf Leinwand, 2018
2: 14 Juillet, 40 x 50 x 2,5cm, Öl auf Leinwand, 2018
3: links: Pijp, 60 x 50 x 1,6cm, Öl auf Leinwand, 2017; rechts: T-disc, 50 x 60 x 1,8cm, Öl auf Leinwand, Vinyl, 2017
4: links: Cabriolet, 40 x 50 x 1,8cm, Öl auf Leinwand, 2017; rechts: Josette, 120 x 100 x 2,5cm, Öl auf Leinwand, 2018
5: After Peintre Moke, 170 x 160 x 3,5cm, Öl auf Leinwand, 2018