There seems to be a continuous stream of German painters overflowing the international artmarkets with well crafted, lushly painted imagery. In a lot of articles I have read about the subject they are categorized under the name ‘neo romantics’, which strikes me as a bit odd, but then again: what’s in name. I have no desire to go deeper into the subject anyway, heck: I wouldn’t even have mentioned it if it hadn’t been for the citymuseum of Helmond. Up until now you may never have heard of Helmond. chances are, after reading this, you will never again. However, in my humble opinion, the curator of the citymuseum in Helmond managed to pick and attract winner: the German ‘neo romantic’ painter Sven Kroner.
Kroners work actually does show a resemblance to the romantic painters; his works show idyllic landscapes, beautiful nature. Had I been even the slightest bit religious I would belief you could actually see the hand of God in his sceneries. Regular readers might know that an aspect I really like in a painting is that ‘second look’ quality. Does the painting mae you look again, and if you do, does it show you new things? Kroners works do. At first he tricks you into believing that what you see is all beauty and natural wonder. Mountains, forests, lakes… but the second look gives you the horrible tourism, abandoned apartments, rusty machinery, all polluting what was once pure and wonderful.
Kroner shows us how mankind may not the blessing on earth that we hope to be, but not in a dark and angry way. With his works he makes us look in the mirror, see our faults and actually smile about it, before we understand that something needs to be done. It’s an approach that might actually prove to be very effective.