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Untitled, 1980

oil on canvas

Untitled is in line with the works that Tal Coat produced at the end of his life. He opted at that time for an abstract painting, almost monochrome, but which is never devoid of "figures". For his canvas, Tal Coat chose an earthy tone paint, mixing different colors that give this brushed and finely diluted effect. In the center of the canvas, a trace, like a wound in the paint, breaks the uniformity and tranquility of the background. It could have been drawn with a finger. This trace can be interpreted as the representation of an element or as a sign, but in each case, it makes sense. It is after his meeting with the philosopher Henri Maldiney and the painter André Masson that his painting focuses on expression and feeling, through the representation of signs, crosses, lines, punctuations. He tries through them to link the natural to the spiritual. In this sense, one could for example see in Untitled the representation of a mountainous landscape. We can guess it from the shape of the trace in the center of the canvas, but also from the way of applying the paint, the way of applying the brush strokes. Nature occupies a predominant place in Tal Coat's production and in his mind. But, as Frédéric Benrath writes, Tal Coat's paintings "ask less to be recognized than to be seen and explored”. Basically, everyone can see what they want, being precise or being correct doesn’t matter.

Tal Coat is interested in arts and works often neglected by his contemporaries of the time: Romanesque art or prehistoric art. Tal Coat was a great walker and visited the Dordogne in France, Lascaux and Les Eyzies several times. We can find in the painting Untitled an influence of prehistoric frescoes. Painting by hand on stone walls is an act of union with nature, because in these representations it is both subject (we think for example of animals and hunting scenes) and support. Tal Coat reproduces this gesture, this intention of the first men, the first artists. Dubuffet wrote "you have to unlearn to be free". This is Tal Coat's approach, which frees itself from all the tradition of art history and returns to the origins of painting.

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