I'm not sure how to explain this but let me try. I have always said that if a piece of art has done its job if it evokes a strong emotion within me. That means, looking so deep within the painting that you can sense the the soul of the artist.
I find this within the works of Norman Liebovitch. There is a deep sense of despair. To be fair, the music may contribute to that feeling and too, the presence of Munsch's, 'The Scream', in the news lately.
There are elements of Munsch's style within Leibovitch's work. But there is much more. The paintings we see cover a wide range of the human experience. Its a tableau of life. Some of the paintings look like they were reproduced from the Lasceaux caves, or the Peterborough Petroglyphs.
The pictures run the gamut from a mediaeval style portrait, to prison barbed wire, from factories and lonely streets to people who look into the world through solitary, introspective, and saddened eyes. There is that ever present sense of despair within the human condition. Its existential, in that it says that our lives are spent within the walls of social prisons which are beyond our control.
Its important to look at Leibovitch's works within the social context of his age. He was Jewish, and he painted within the 40's, 50's and early 60's. He painted through the years when the Jews of Europe were subjected to horrible Nazi atrocities and when humanity was mobilized and controlled by great political and social forces. He was painting through the period when Albert Camus was existentially struggling to define the freedom of individuals. When viewed from this perspective, Leibovitch gives us a dark image of man's inner landscape. He is more then a painter. He's an artist who observes and inteprets the relationship between man and his world.
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A Portrait of the Visual Arts in Canada, is intended to celebrate the richness of Canada's visual arts, and to promote the arts in Canada.
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I make every effort to credit the sources of information used in this blog and to obtain the permission and cooperation of all the works presented by living artists. I try, as much as possible to use works from public sources eg. national and provincial collections, of deceased artists. If for any reason, any artist disapproves of anything written about them or their work the artist is encouraged to request withdrawal of the content.