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About Intimacy and Distance

It was a challenging week. I had to say goodbye to my multifocal glasses and hand them over for repair. Those who do not wear glasses, or are not used to multi-focal, will have a hard time understanding the difficulty.

Suddenly you have to move around with two pairs of glasses and change every moment you change the distance from near to far or vice versa. Distance awareness is rising miraculously. Going from reading to ... almost everything else becomes conscious and considerate.

And in the studio?

Mixing colors - reading glasses. Remote drawing - distance glasses. Close-up - reading glasses. As long as I'm in the 70 cm range of work - everything is fine, but as soon as I step a little - I change glasses. Not easy.

But anyone who knows me well enough, knows that I would not have written this post if there was only a "challenge" here (not to mention "difficulty").

This awareness was an eye-opener (!). I was glad I was just working on small paintings (30 by 30 cm), which allowed me to stay intimate with it (in the 70 cm range), most of the time.

A good painting is a painting that is pleasing to the eye from a distance, and fascinates us up close.

I have always been drawn to this observation from zero distance in an original painting. The brushstrokes, the layers of paint, the engravings, the fingerprints of the artist ... there is something sensual in this encounter with a close-up painting.

In art museums I like observing abstract expressionism (easy…) as well as Renaissance or Impressionism ... it seems to me that what attracts me is this close look. Such an intimate, maybe even a little intrusive, sense of feeling the artist in his or her work. I remember seeing a brush hair stuck to the paint in a work of one of the great Impressionists. Discovery. Exciting!

Moving away from an artwork is almost a consciousness changer. Suddenly the composition is revealed. "The big picture." The structure.

There is no doubt that a combination of the two is a recipe for a good artwork, and that the transition from reading glasses to distance glasses has strengthened this understanding.

And yet, I was happy to get my multifocal glasses back. What can I say? It's a pleasure to be in the comfort zone 😊.


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