From 10 February to 27 May, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen is showing work by the Czech-Dutch artist Tomas Rajlich. This exhibition offers an unparalleled experience of space and colour. Several of Tomas Rajlich’s monumental canvases, which he has given on long-term loan to Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, force us to rethink the nature of painting.
Painting was declared dead in the early 1970s. Tomas Rajlich (1940) opposed this notion and revived painting by making the act of painting itself the subject of his canvases. In 1975 he was one of the most important exponents of Fundamental painting: a collective term for works in which idea and materials are inseparable. Rajlich still considers himself a Fundamental painter and has continued to develop as such to the present day.
The grids that were so characteristic of Rajlich’s early works seem to have disappeared from his recent monochrome canvases. The grid has become simply one of the elements, like the paint, glitter and linen that Rajlich uses to build up his extravagant paintings.