Donning the Light and Shedding the World”

On Matter, Spirit and a Lingering Glance
Ada Naamani, Curator

Studio work is a type of revelation. An affinity with color and with canvas; the arena of action that takes the inner movement of the spirit, seeking to hatch, and through the use of the medium of painting, helps it emerge and materialize in the world. It is the kind of emotional connection that reveals itself through a slow process of germination. A spiritual gestation that gives birth to the painted artwork, after an extended pregnancy that is fully attentive to its budding.

Color leads the way. From the moment it discovers itself and insists on the necessity of taking shape and dancing on the canvas, a painting is born. Movement occurs in double time: From the self to the painting and from the painting to the self. A state of symbiosis, with the inevitable coupling of necessity and urgency in delivering the painting. This state may also be understood in terms of music, which has no actual matter, and is the most abstract and spiritual of arts.

In his book, “On the Spiritual in Art, Particularly in Painting”, Kandinsky described the process as follows “Color is the key, the eye, the hammer; the spirit is the piano, with its numerous strings. The artist is the hand that presses one key or another, thus practically leading the human spirit into a state of trembling awe”.

Trembling of spirit requires deep listening. Lior Reizel’s paintings require a lingering glance, demanding a divergence from the ordinary way in which we are accustomed to look; we of the frenetic generation; the epoch of visual consumption. Lior’s paintings implore the observer to resonate to a sound within his or her own spirit; to connect to that special state that prevents our spirits from growing heavy and clumsy; the mood which maintains spirit at just the right level, similar to the fine tuning of musical strings.

Reizel is close in spirit to the reflective aspects of abstract expressionist American painters – Mark Rothko and Barnett Newman, and to the mystical spiritual art of Anish Kapoor. However, first and foremost, hers is an inner dialogue with the twists and turns of her psyche; a dialogue spurred on by curiosity and a daring sense of observation of her own inner workings; with the totality of attention and close listening that ultimately lead to fruition in the colors on the canvas.

In documenting her process of work, the artist writes: “Art is my home port, from which I depart on my journeys and to which I return. It is my way of transmitting, of touching and of telling my story in a language that transcends language and culture. Through my work, I use color to express those hidden vistas that have nearly been forgotten from mind, but not from heart. In my creative work, it is these very regions that I seek to reveal; the places that echo with remembrance in the hearts of observers” (Lior Reizel, Touches of Color as an Expression of Concealed Regions, “Faces”, Journal of Culture and Art, April 2013).