© VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019

Éclatement, 1955

Judit Reigl (* 1923, HUN)

Medium: Oil on Canvas
Dimensions: 192,5 x 207,5 cm

about the work

The Hungarian artist is one of the surprise inclusions in the Reinhard Ernst Collection. Largely unknown until now, her energetically charged works are impressive and a testimony to their position in European postwar art. After studying art at the Academy in Budapest and Rome, the artist returned to her homeland ruled by a dictatorship in 1948. In the early 1950s, Judit Reigl fled from Hungary to Paris, as she experienced restrictions in her artistic and individual freedom due to the political situation. In the French capital she initially found refuge with her university friend Simon Hantaï, who introduced her to André Breton, the spokesman of the surrealists. Inspired by the surrealist technique of the écriture automatique, Reigl discovered and explored its free expression and developed it further. Her aim was and continues to be to achieve mental and physical automatism. As such, she works with her whole body, fills the entire image area with movement, rhythm and pace. She throws whole buckets of paint on her large-scale canvases. Her work Éclatement (Explosion) in the Reinhard Ernst Collection is precisely from this period. Under the title of Outburst, she created a whole series of works that can be attributed to the creative and individual freedom that Reigl experienced in Paris in the 1950s. Together with Simon Hantaï, Judit Reigl became a part of the emerging informal art scene in France. They moved in circles associated with Michel Tapié and Hans Hartung and exhibited together with Georges Mathieu in 1956. The now 96-year old artist still lives and works despite her advanced years in Marcoussis near Paris. At the same time, a look at her overall œuvre reveals its enormous breadth, as it includes both abstract as well as figurative works. Judit Reigl’s art is a surprise and her inclusion in the Reinhard Ernst Collection gives her new and deserved recognition.

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