Depicting delicate green hues and patches of brown scattered among the mudflats beneath a towering blue sky, this vertical-format painting was originally conceived as an improvisation in the studio. Particularly these studio works underscore the fact that Sprotte never aspired to faithfully replicating what he saw in the natural landscape. Rather through his intensive studies and observations, he sought to gain a keen insight into the inner connections and intrinsic structure of nature itself, to which he then gives visual expression in his paintings.
Exemplifying this approach is this present work "Island in the Mudflats", particularly its the careful juxtaposition of the various green and brown tones. It is obvious that the artist is not striving to create a mere representation of verdant meadows and soil. No specific island is referenced here, nor is the artist interested in fashioning a retrospective topographic reproduction. Instead, Sprotte's intention is to capture the atmosphere, the energy and the structure of the natural landscape. The painter himself once described his objectives as follows: "In his now lost statements on landscape painting, Albrecht Dürer stressed that even a cloud, a tree or a rock were for him "fully figurative". At the time, Dürer was endeavouring to overcome the arbitrary distinction between figurative and non-figurative representation, which in our own century made history."
Consequently, Sprotte's painting is at once both figurative and abstract - the landscape remains identifiable, but is generalised and abstracted to the extent that it can be perceived and experienced as a universal phenomenon of nature.
Subscribe to our newsletter and/or news on selected artists!