After The Agony


2000

Oil on canvas

London / Pied--Terre restaurant
450 x 150 cm
The work has been commissioned by 2-Michelin-starred Pied--Terre restaurant. It is located on a busy street in London with several restaurants to each side, many of which are Indian or Asian. To remain somewhat faithful to the tradition of landscape murals on Charlotte Street, I decided to create a mural for Pied--Terre restaurant.
One of the painting's main features is that it is precisely adjusted to the available wall space which is characterised by odd corners and diagonals as well as an air-conditioning in the centre.
The landscape on the mural does not depict a specific place but is a collage made up by numerous, different paintings from the National Gallery down the road. It cites early and high Renaissance paintings in which a strong desire to create three-dimensional space can first be recognised. The paintings which have been used as 'templates' for the collage of the comission are by fifteenth-century artists such as Andrea Mantegna, Giovanni Bellini or Sandro Botticelli.
The title of the mural and one of the main motifs in the foreground refers to Giovanni Bellini's painting 'Agony in the Garden'. The rock formations in the mural are blown-up adaptations from rock imagery seen on small-scale paintings by fourteenth century artists like Giotto, Duccio or Ugolino di Nerio. The enlargement of forms and imagery exemplifies an alienated aesthetic that is very different to its original.
Links:
National Gallery - 726
National Gallery - 1417
National Gallery - 3375
National Gallery - 1330