Diptic Nocturn, 1993

Basel 2016
Galerie Lelong & Co.
mixed media on wood and assemblage
Artwork size
691.0 x 250.0 (cm)
272.0 x 98.4 (inch)
‘Two large pieces of wood are given an almost uniform sandy patina made from a characteristic blend of powdered marble fixed with a varnish and a pigment. They are then united by a vertical bed frame at the end of which is affixed a white pillow. The bedstead does not extend to the full height, leaving the two large pieces of wood separated by a yawning gap over which a roughly nailed plank is fixed, rather like the lintel over an open door. On the upper part of the two halves of the diptych, the sandy color fades allowing the nocturnal black background to emerge. On the left a half-circle has been drawn, with a full circle on the right, evoking not only the moon but also its movement across the sky through what can be imagined as clouds. The very large size of it suggests a panoramic vision, but this is already too long and laborious a description for a work of art, whose visual force surpasses all words. And yet here is the perfect example of what reading brings to Tàpies, when, during one of his early-morning reading sessions, he came across the words of a Zen monk: The thief left it behind the moon at my window.’ (Jean Frémon, Gloire des Formes, Paris, 2005)