Color Surfaces

Lothar Quinte to Bernd Berner

Optical art of the late 1950s and 1960s is more than restlessness, visual deception and distinguished use of movement and light. Lothar Quinte, born in 1923 and a standard bearer of Op Art, is proof positive. His works are quiet, an almost monochrome and subtle oeuvre. The Schlitzbild (slit picture), produced in 1965, is a clear, symmetrical composition and a captivating feat of visual surprise. By no means can this work be described merely as a red color surface painting. It is an interplay of red, black, and blue, all of which claim their space on the canvas.

Quinte, who designed a number of church windows in his lifetime, reminds us how complex colors can become in the presence of light. Powerful black suddenly appears delicate and shimmering under shade. The transition from cool blue to warm turquoise is fluid, found only in nature as the sun’s rays are cast over the sea. Quinte takes a two-dimensional canvas and creates a bona fide optical vibration.

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