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"Karel Appel - pastorale chiaroscuro"
2001-04-28 until 2001-06-24
He is a sculptor, graphic artist and ceramist; he has choreographed a ballet and designed sets; but above all,
Karel Appel has remained the painter that he has been since the beginning. The Stedelijk Museum celebrates
his 80th birthday, on April 25, 2001, with an extensive exhibition of his painting from the past decade.
Since his first exhibition (Young Painters, 1946) the Stedelijk Museum has closely followed the Appel's career and
regularly organised exhibitions of his current work. The present exhibition stands in this tradition. An large proportion of
the works are landscapes which were produced during his stays in Tuscany. The nude too is a conspicuous theme. The
about 70 paintings in the exhibition vary in style; in some works Appel seems to have more than ever rediscovered the raw
rage to paint of earlier times, while others are on the contrary strikingly modest in colour, composition and the handling of
the paint. In addition the exhibition contains various paintings in combination with objects that are introduced onto the
canvasses. Such variation is the thread that runs through all the themes which are represented in the exhibition, from the
Nude Figures from 1990, the works under the title Horizon of Tuscany from 1995, through No Goodbyes from
1997 and Up to the Sky from 1998. As a foretaste of the present exhibition, in the summer of 2000 in the Museum's
Gallery of Honour 18 paintings were to be seen which the painter, who lives in New York, had made that same year in The
Netherlands. One of them, Seated Nude, from 2000, has been purchased by the Museum and is now being exhibited
again. Many of the other works in this show have never been exhibited previously.
A catalogue will appear with the exhibition with essays by Johannes Gachnang and Jean Frémon, and an interview with
Appel conducted by Rudi Fuchs. The book is produced in cooperation with NAi Uitgevers and will cost f 59,50.
Karel Appel- Pastorale Chiaroscuro is sponsored by Shell Nederland B.V.
The Stedelijk Museum is not the only museum that celebrates Karel Appel's birthday. From April 28 through September 2
the Municipal Museum in The Hague will mount the exhibition Karel Appel - Works on Paper 1940-2000, and from
April 25 through August 12 the Cobra Museum in Amstelveen is showing the retrospective Karel Appel - Sculptures