Ensemble of Luminosity
Ran Tenenbaum’s exhibition has the effect of a cerebral déjà vu. Images collected from subterranean sceneries of consciousness mesh with fresh and contemporary upbeat rhythms of tempo and movement in hue. The contrast between the bold and the soft, the dramatic and subtle overtones, stream through all of the works, invoking the exposed nerves of the unknown. Magnified by their unorthodox color, Ran’s works are complex and intense, and invite deep consideration from the viewer.
The point of departure for this group of works stems from what Tenenbaum refers to as the confines of our childhood and youth; the formative years of grade school, children’s coming of age and sexual awakening within suffocating educational confines. The rigidity and conformity of the school system sucks all the life force out of their subjects – yet the light washing over the school room through the windows affords a glimpse of the alluring outdoors to trickle into the classroom. Illuminating the space with holy grandeur accentuates the mediocrity of the repetitive daily emotional poverty whose elements conquer and extinguish the human spirit.
The works are saturated in luminous hue, washed over with layers of classical foundations juxtaposed with glossy acrylic interface bridging seamlessly hundreds of years of painterly fantasy. Renaissance backdrops of fantastical imagery come to mind, like Hieronymus Bosch and his definitive defiance towards categorization.
Yet in the same breath the works are completely contemporary. The gestures of seemingly contrary painting disciplines coexist in harmony yet in angst. Images built up classically and then broken down almost whimsically, theatrically, wondrously with overtones of washes of acrylic disguised as oil paint alchemically layered to a seamless portrait just to be smeared and stormed over in an almost violent elegance of contiguous blasphemous techniques. Together they jazz in a seamless composition of color and light, dungeon darkness and sacred togetherness. Uniting disparate techniques Tenenbaum’s broken down images are miraculously meshed by harmonic proportion afforded by the formative principles of masterful painting.
Lisa Motro, Tel Aviv, Fall 2022