Arts and Gardens

An arena for pictorial action

In Gerhard Stoltz’s painting Arena, the movement is the focus. Two dynamic, sweeping yellow forms constitute a rough oval, which represents the main subject of the image - an arena.

Gerhard Stoltz: Arena, 2007.
Gerhard Stoltz: Arena, 2007.
Alf Edgar Andresen

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In the middle of the picture’s bottom edge the two movements meet in a semicircle radiating upwards, in shades of yellow and red. The yellow arches meet again further up and to the right, overlapping with one of the two blue stripes radiating out from the semicircle. The blue ray crosses behind one of the yellow fields and, becoming green, continues up to the upper right corner of picture. The meandering lines and the distinct fields of color against a black background create a sense of movement struggling against immobility.

Stoltz regards the picture plane as a backdrop, where various emotions and actions can unfold. The beauty of there not being a clearly recognizable motif, is that an arena is opened up to the viewer’s gaze - the painter puts no constraints on what we see.

Gerhard Stoltz (1948-) is a painter, printmaker and writer. His artworks are relatively abstract, and often with geometric shapes as a key element. Nevertheless, there is usually a motif hidden in the picture. Stoltz has written and illustrated several books, both for children and adults. He has decorated a number of public venues, including the Flesland airport and the Haukeland Hospital.