Sometimes modern art defeats me. Recently on show at the White Cube Gallery in St James’s were abstract sculptural paintings by the Belgian Artist Bram Bogart (1921-2012), almost an exact contemporary of my mother, but she would have not understood Bogart’s art at all.
Seen previously at the Saatchi Gallery in 2017 with a theme of ‘white on white‘, with large works created with huge waves and sweeps of paint, almost like over-scaled icing or ‘play-dough’, contrasting with areas were left flat, Bogart described himself as both an Expressionist and a Sculptural Painter. His work is included in the collections of many galleries including Tate Modern, but you do feel that he was perhaps having just a little too much fun.
It is strange to reflect that his early started out with a focus on cubism and figurative drawing, showing flowers, still life and self-portraits, before he changed direction towards these layers and sweeps of thick paint, which became more abstract as his career developed.
Just five minutes away from the White Cube in Mason’s Yard is the Bernard Jacobson Gallery where, in 2011, to celebrate his 90th birthday, he held an exhibition of his monochrome paintings, sadly his last in London before he died in May 2012, two months before his 91st birthday.