… AND THERE WAS LIGHT
And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the Darkness. Genesis 1:3-4
This display of Salustiano’s work is, without a doubt, a triumph in light depiction.
Although not the first time that depicting light has been accomplished in painting, with the great Caravaggio managing it at the beginning of the 17th Century with unquestionable mastery, Salustiano takes the representation to a completely new level.
While Caravaggio’s pieces are the paradigm of tenebrist chiaroscurism that characterised the 17th Century, where naturalism meets narration of biblical stories where saints take to the streets and are illuminated by lights that project, highlight and sculpt their forms, Salustiano’s work flees from this Baroque naturalism and settles within the exquisite elegance of the Quattrocentro poets and painters.
Salustiano, the most brilliant Sevillian maestro of our time, has created three series of portraits, whereby the colour of the background, either red, black or white, is the leitmotif. Each of these series makes up different iconographies, in which beauty, excellence and timelessness are the common denominators. This is where Salustiano can be seen as the antithesis of Caravaggio.
In this exhibition, his works of art represent paintings, prints, digital prints, all in all consisting of unquestionable contemporaneity, at the same time as retaining resounding classicism. Artwork where, from the black background, created from using multiple natural pigments, emerges figures with such power, plasticity and imposition, that they manage to create an optical illusion of looking like half reliefs, thus overcoming the two-dimensionality of the paint. The light effect that he creates, an aura emitted by each portrait, completely relives the biblical text: “… and there was light”.
We can confirm that Salustiano’s ability to depict light is without a doubt an incredible feat: it is good, more than just good in fact!