German Expressionism, painting by:
Hubert Roestenburg – s’Hertogenbosch
This painting, s’Hertogenbosch, is striking because of its scale and its intensity. It makes it clear that Hubert Roestenburg is a titan among expressionist painters. The fact that Hubert Roestenburg has been lumped in with German expressionism by the European art critics is understandable. The passion and emotions that always carry a Roestenburg painting are on full display here.
Painted in the late eighties, the painter describes painting during that period in his life as a “battle”, a “fight”. Not a fight with the subject matter, but a fight within himself. Hardly any painter in the 20th century has so directly involved himself in his painting. There is no “vision”, no “point of view”, there is just the artist giving himself over completely to his craft. Hubert Roestenburg once famously said: “I don’t control painting, painting controls me”.
The true art of Hubert Roestenburg is how he always puts himself on the canvas, no filter, no reservation. Don’t ask him about what he meant with his painting, or even how he felt while painting it. The answer is right in front of you. Hubert Roestenburg will never go into lengthy explanations about his paintings; he might tell you where it was painted and that he was standing up to his ankles in mud, the entire time he was working on it, but in essence, the painting is Hubert Roestenburg. Just take it in. The painter hardly ever fails in conveying the emotions and passion that lies at the heart of his art.
What makes Hubert Roestenburg’s work so unique is how it stirs the senses and unlocks emotions. Emotions the viewer might have kept hidden to him or herself. In that way, getting to know Hubert Roestenburg’s work can be a journey into once own inner life. A journey that can reveal and enhance our deepest feelings.
Click images to enlarge and to learn more about each individual painting