Δευτέρα, 19 Δεκεμβρίου 2016

Materiality Refined: The Carvings of Andrei Raileanu

Andre Raileanu is a young Romanian icon carver I have been keeping my eye on for a while now.  We have already written a few articles on the amazing things happening in Romania (here, here and here) but Raileanu’s exploration of stone carving stands very much on its own as both an exception and a worthy representative among the more famous painters Romania has to offer.

His work is quite potent and shares some of the explorations of modern aesthetics found in his contemporaries such as Gabriel Toma Chituc and Ioan Popa. He preserves the simple rawness of stone, reinforcing it with a sparse approach to composition, and contrasting this minimalism to a refined and subtle capacity to capture facial expressions. And really it is those faces that grab us as they float in the bare stone. So many icon carvers are technically proficient, but few of them can capture the depth of iconic faces, the sober sadness and profound gaze which characterizes our favorite painted icons.


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