Hubert Scheibl, “Phoksundo”, oil on canvas, 2003/4, signed, dated and titled
In “Phoksundo” the well-travelled Austrian painter Hubert Scheibl processes his impressions of a journey to Nepal. The cycle is named after a mountain lake in the Nepalese region of Dolpo at the foot of the Himmalaya massif. In northwestern Nepal and nestled in a majestic mountainous region, Lake Phoksundo is located at an altitude of over 3,000 meters.
With a striking division into a darker upper and bright-red lower part, Scheibl perhaps refers to an impressive sunrise or sunset at the lake. The dichotomy manifests itself not only in terms of color. The two fields also differ from each other in the way the paint has been applicated. The colorful lower section, with its impasto layers, clearly stands in contrast to the smudged upper section, where the underlaying colors shimmer through the smoothed, dark cover paint very delicately.
Hubert Scheibl’s signature painting technique can be easily understood from this representative vertical format. In a time-consuming process, which, as here, can extend over a period of almost two years, the artist applies countless layers of paint onto the canvas. In a final creative act, he then uses various utensils, such as wide spatulas, to uncover and disclose these layers again, thus creating terrific, optical illusion spaces full of atmosphere.
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