Julius Bissier

July 31 60 H Honeycomb
© Julius Bissier / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn

Julius Bissier

31. Juli 60 H Wabe / July 31 60 H Honeycomb, 1960

Egg oil tempera on linen
19,5 × 22,5 cm

signed, dated and titled lower right: Jules Bissier 31 July 60 H honeycomb
(BISSIJ/M 80)

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Literature: Cat. Julius Bissier. Galerie Schlichtenmaier / Hagnauer Museum, Grafenau/ Stuttgart 2015, fig. p. 29

In his egg oil tempera work on linen - dated 31 July 60 in the title and with the addition of "H" and "Waben" - Bissier creates a highly complex spatial relationship by means of the simplest signs on the surface. Thus, an apparently lightly inked, irregularly running band succinctly stretches across the picture ground, interrupted by a triangle lying obliquely in the format, rounded on all sides, which is indicated partly only as a line, partly only by the adjacent surfaces of the aforementioned band as well as a reddish-brownish shadow surface above this three-sided form, which appears to have been sprayed on. The handwritten note "honeycomb" refers to the fact that this is a sign for an enclosed area. Within this recess area between the dark areas, a delicate play of form and color stands out, which proves to be a small fundamental treasure, consisting of an abstract thingness - the contradiction of such a formulation is due to Bissier's dualistic thinking and has an almost programmatic character here. On closer inspection, one sees a restrained pink vessel in which a red and a dark blue egg shape are revealed. Next to it, in a minimalist square, a system of cells or honeycombs unfolds with red forms both inside and outside, backed by green-colored connecting surfaces. Below the vessel, Bissier has placed a blue dot surrounded by a shimmering golden aura. From the surface, the viewer perceives a front and back as well as a side by side, thus a potential spatial situation. One does not have to go so far to see the new development of nuclear energy taking place in the years around 1960 and its significance in the public interest symbolically interpreted, that is, to witness an increasingly profound and in many cases incomprehensible insight into the cellular structure of the world - the 'head-side' color eruption could reinforce this impression. But it actually suggests that Bissier is calling attention here to cellular structures that move inward as well as outward, figuratively and literally in flux - intercellular systems that can be read as life storage (vessel) or even as a small scene of creation (gold gloriole). The inside-outside alternation creates - through formal and color nuances alone - a space that expands over the overall composition.
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