Van Look hat den fünfstufigen Horizontalismus entwickelt, der sich über fünf Lichtblöcke, den »Lichthorizont« definiert. Durch die Aufteilung in Vordergrund, Mittelgrund, Hintergrund lässt sich erkennen, dass Van Look aus der Tradition der Landschaftsmalerei kommt. Aber: Van Look hat sich von der »äußeren« Landschaft abgewandt und der »inneren« zugewandt. Er fügt den drei irdischen Dimensionen zwei transzendente hinzu: Raum und Kosmos. Die Symbolik durch hochformatige, vertikal angeordnete Landschaften (Lichtblöcke) ist Hinweis darauf, dass es sich bei seiner Landschaft um die Metamorphose der Landschaft des Menschen handelt.
Prof. Hans H. Hofstätter
Aus: Lufthansa „Künstler der Welt“
Hans-Günther Van Look wurde 1939 in Freiburg im Breisgau geboren. Er studierte an der Akademie der Bildenden Künste in Karlsruhe bei Prof. Georg Meistermann und bei Prof. Eiermann, TH Karlsruhe, und erhielt mehrere Stipendien, z. B. das Arbeitsstipendium des Kulturkreises im BDI e.V. sowie das Stipendium der Deutschen Akademie Rom, Villa Massimo. Seine Arbeiten wurden in diversen Ausstellungen im In- und Ausland gezeigt, u.a. in Freiburg, Innsbruck, Rom, Nancy, Leverkusen, Köln, Hannover und München. Van Look gehört zu den bekannten deutschen Glasmalern. Zahlreiche Aufträge für sakrale und profane Kunst wurden an ihn vergeben, und seine Werke sind im In-und Ausland in Museen und Privatsammlungen vertreten. Die Malerei van Looks folgt dem Phänomen des Lichtes. In seinen „Lichthorizonten“ bestimmen die schwarzen Farbfelder den Bildaufbau und den Verlauf der gesamten Farbkomposition, Aus schwebenden, horizontalen Farbbändern entwickeln sich Farbzonen, die sowohl Ausgangspunkt eines meditativen Farbkanons sind, als auch eines eruptiv-fließenden Farbfelderrhythmus. Van Look sagt:“In der Welt des Raumes sehen wir Lichthorizonte, die uns Signale von der Idee des Raumes zurückwerfen. So wie Van Gogh sich im Schwefelgelb dem ungeheuren Gravitationsfeld der stürzenden Materie nähert, so wie Caspar David Friedrich in tiefem Blau Raumdimensionen entwirft, so steht die Malerei meiner „Lichthorizonte“ in derselben Raumauseinandersetzung, um der Idee des Raumes neue Lichtwerte zuzuführen.“
Hans-Günther Van Look was born in Freiburg in1939. He studied in Karlsruhe under Profesor Georg Meistermann at the Academy of Fine Arts and under Professor Eiermann at the College of Technology. He was awarded several scholar ships, including the working scholarship of the BDI Art Circle and another from the German Academy of Rome, Villa Massimo. His works have been shown at various exhibitions in Germany and abroad, e. g. in Freiburg, Innsbruck, Rome, Nancy, Leverkusen, Cologne, Hanover, Munich and many other cities. Van Look is one of the best-known German glass painters. He has received many commissions for sacred and secular art, and His works can be found in private and public collections both inside and outside Germany. Van Look’s painting follows the phenomenon of light. In His „light horizons“, the areas of black color mark the structure of the picture and the scheme of the whole color composition. color zones evolve out of hovering horizontal bands of color and are the starting-point for a meditative color canon and of an eruptive rhythm of flowing areas of color. Van Look says,“In the wide expanse of space we can see light horizons, which reflect signals from the idea of space back to us. Just as Van Gogh approached the immense gravitational fields of plunging matter with His brimstone-yellow colors; just as Caspar David Friedrich developed dimensions in dark-blue space in which the contours of the real are resolved, my paintings of ‚light horizons‘ deal with space in the same way in order to impart new light values to the idea of space.
Van Look’s Light-Horizon
First of all, a clear articulation: horizontally layered colour ﬁelds, ascending in mostly lighter tones, are built upwards, overcoming the horizon lines-laid out by means of plastic emphasis, through graduation and variation of the colours dominating contiguous ﬁelds, or drawn posthumously as a borderline and usually ending in the shimmering black of night. In the second place: the ﬁve- layered horizontal construction of fore-, middle-, back-ground, space and cosmos is overlaid with broadly rendered, expansive/space-grabbing complexes of orgiastic brush-strokes, tumbling down vertically along the edges of the black ﬁeld, ﬂaring up suddenly in black and proliferating luxuriantly. Here and there they weave themselves into the texture of the horizons: everything is indissolubly connected with everything else.
In Light-Horizon e.g. Hommage à de Kooning: the vertical penetrates the horizontal layering in such a way that the pictorial space implodes, the verticals taking total possession of the space and driving the horizon structure almost to the point of disappearance.
A horizon is a horizon for an encompassing glance. It stakes out a space which is the surrounding space for this glance, a space which extends from the immediate vicinity out into the distance, and which ends in the horizon line that always circumscribes it, before finding a continuation in the spaces that border on it and point to even remoter distances. All subjective life is situated within spatial and temporal horizons, horizons of proximate and distant orientation, of sedimented history and tradition, within horizons of the co-present and of expectations that reach out and relate to the future. Everything, however, is encompassed by an ultimate, emptier horizon; the experiencing subject can penetrate to a certain extent the horizons of space and time, but there always looms beyond an endless progression from horizon to horizon, out to the totally diffuse. No true endpoint, at which there would be no further relation to a horizon, can be reached. The horizontal structure as such remains standing; an absolute, empty horizon is everlastingly in play for the experiencing subject.
The upward movement of the light-horizons shows this restlessness, characteristic of the layered orientation of lived experience from a “here” out into the spaces of “there”: in Van Look’s paintings the layering of horizons first leads the viewer’s eye upwards from his own place and allows him to see the horizontal fanning-out of each life-enactment. At the same time, the horizons shown become surrounding spaces for the viewer, that is to say spaces which he experiences and, moreover, whose very law of motion has become visible for him.
Horizon-Origins. Beyond the bounds of the fourth horizon, the space, Van Look places the cosmic night. The horizons, which have become visible in their layering, refer to something in which they have their origin but which remains fundamentally invisible: in its over-brightness, the source-ground of light is dark as night. Portraying this depth of night in a painting is the seemingly paradoxical attempt to make visible precisely that which withdraws in the appearing of things, that which as such allows them to appear-just as it releases the appearing things. Van Look paints the back of the picture along with the front.
According to the phenomenology of consciousness, this unconditional is the fundamentally invisible depth of a constituting transcendental consciousness.
In its differing disjunct re-presentation of the original plunge (Ur-Sprung) in the origin of self and world, the picture’s eye attempts a continual integration, projecting human existence over the whole of its provenance, which is, of course, never actual, but rather builds itself up from one moment to the next, then, in a split second, scatters in the auto-externalizing genesis which fashions the spatio- temporality of the horizons. This tension between our continual reintegration into our existence and the unsurmountable discontinuity of its contingently precarious space-time is the theme of Van Look’s latest paintings. The pylon-the gateway to the pharaohs’ tombs-becomes here a beacon warning us not to waste our time. In its verticality it stands against death in life, against a life that makes itself ﬁnite, i.e. that comes to an end in the world in which it makes itself at home and no longer lives in the world the movement towards the world-night-a life that does not span the interval between integrity and fragility in the moment which it must time and again conquer anew.
Hans Rainer Sepp