David Postl

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*1980, Vienna

The work of David Postl is notable for a strongly pronounced emphasis on the material element of his paintings, which consequently stands out as a means in its own right of articulating their subject matter. The artist often glues silk or tissue paper onto the canvas, works with primer paint, and uses delicate ways of applying various paints and pigments onto the ground.

The end product then oscillates between painting, print and (de)collage. Postl's reference to the broader cultural context consists in his frequent balancing on the edge between pure calligraphy as an aesthetizing art form of lettering, and a play with the design of various letters, with “uninhibited typography” as a principle of individuating the rudimentary elements of written language.

Essential to this artist, however, is work with paints. Postl handles paints in two different ways: either he applies them on a purely random basis, or on the contrary, using thoroughly purposeful, conscious processes serving him to create shapes and forms whose distinctive outlines relate to elements of illustration and comics aesthetics. On another plane, the choice of a softhued palette conjures up an impression of the painting seemingly disappearing, or paling, before the viewer's eyes.

In reality thus, being viewed during a certain period of time Postl's paintings actually become scenes of action. In perceiving them, one cannot help but feel that the colors “must after all have been more distinct before”. And yet, in no way does this belief prevent one from being fully aware of the paintings' peculiar, and in a sense unstable, sense of presence.

text: Pavel Kubesa

Profile image of David Postl,