Monday, April 4, 2011

S.J-Mikines 1906-1979. Fyri jarðarferð 1935. Listasavn Føroya, Tórshavn, Føroya by craniv boyd.

S.J-Mikines 1906-1979. Fyri jarðarferð 1935. Listasavn Føroya, Tórshavn, Føroya by craniv boyd.


A beam of light is on the far wall shimmering on the surface of grey, the harsh light comes from a window it casts an unencumbered spell over the coffin in the center of the room, the bereaved by the window are touched, its starkness is palpable pressing and encroaching on the forms of a solid family and friends who grieve the loss of one of their own. 


Woman Man they stand in front center obstructing the view of the sarg. A point of light at the height of the inseam of the standing man is there to indicate a continuation of the light saturated surface of the chest for the lost loved one. This couple like most of the group is a volume in black and dark pigments so dark as to be perceived as black. They are there gathered in a moment communing in silence, their silent observation of the dead mirrors our own silent vigil of them in their moment of loss, we too via the mind hand brush and paint of S. J-Mikines´s 1935 painting Fyri jarðarferð, are included in the wake observing from the hall of one of the „pyramids" of Listasavn Føroya a community who is in all likelihood now departed themselves.


The sole bright earthy hue's are the burnt or deep ocher present on garments of two men that stand shoulder to shoulder by the window, their faces are stylistically rendered emerging from the semidarkness, their eyes are dark pits, rather they have no eyes deep set shadows of the brows downcast obscure them. Faces that are rendered in a way of anonymous grief, not one face in the painting is whole they are either profiles of sorrow or partly present fragment swallowed by the black.


Stoic peoples, a presentation of a moment in the quotidian, this is not a historic funeral procession a lá Courbet, rigorous in its romantic panoramic depiction of the community in les grand formats, it is more of the moment prior, the quietude the anticipatory or the reverent, Mikines has painted a community in a spartan expressive bare bones manor that in is transcendent. Humanity and its moment of observation of the dead as show introduced to us by Mikines is about his community observing the emotion of loss than pomp and circumstance or irony Corbet presents of a community in broad day light carrying one of their members to their final resting place.


A dichotomy of proximity and distance, Mikines  has painted archetypes grieving that spread out and over his micro culture, this painting is a moment of accuracy and veracity. It is plausible and you feel the pain. Mikines dispenses with a need for a romantic depiction of a crocodile tear on cheek or maudlin saccharine illustration of emotional responses to loss. Mikines brings the public to a space where people are viewing death he depicts the atmosphere  of a wake rather than  hypernaturalisic portrial of the individuals in their respective grief at a wake in a specific building in Faroe islands. 

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