Eric Reinemann, Interior #10, acrylic on panel, 36” x 46”, 2014
From his quiet observations Eric Reinemann has created layered, Jello-like illusions that encourage the viewer to look deeply into his paintings and to consider the vibrational spaces around them. His layers have a bouncy, 3-D effect. Reinemann may begin a drawing or painting while quietly observing, but ultimately his passionate creations are lively, inventive, even noisy—a hypnotic juxtaposition of casual settings and kaleidoscopic layers.
Reinemann looks not just at solid forms, but also at the space floating around and within those forms—negative space with a surging energy that gives structure and color to the formless in an eye-opening style that is very alive. At the heart of his paintings is his mastery of the fluid pencil line. His talent for drawing is the reward that lies beneath his vivid layers of color and shapes. “Perceptual drawing is the core of my work,” says Reinemann. Viewing his paintings is like looking at and through the surface of soft, rippling colored water to a world beneath. His use of vivid pastels gives a subtle veneer to the movement of each work, pulling the viewer in while countering the active vibrancy of movement with the softness of layers of color. His paintings are about angled interior settings and bubbling landscapes. The style of the recent work is different from his earlier abstract paintings. Some of his older paintings remind me of certain Jackson Pollock pieces; they have a retro feel— bright and dancy. However, they do not have the depth of the work in this exhibition.
The drawing Self Portrait is a showstopper. It is more than just a picture of Reinemann; in it he is showing/telling us his philosophy of art: depth, angles, the ecstatic vibes that interact with us, that, in his words “… give new visual meaning to what has been observed.” In Interior #10 we see a woman on a couch in a room. The slant of the room is refracted, as if we’re looking through a fish-eye lens. The room is alive with color, abstractions, and multi-layering, and except for the pillow on the sofa—a restful island amid all that energy—it is no longer a casual setting. Patio #3 is less hectic, yet still jigglly and inviting because of Reinemann’s whimsical layering.
Reinemann’s landscapes are ever bounding with prismatic pastels, boldly sketched shapes, and uplifting blue and turquoise skies. These exuberant landscapes allow us a glimpse of the artist’s smiling soul. When you slip into the room off the main gallery you encounter two vertical stacks of his scaled-down paintings and sketches. Some coincide with the exhibition, such as CR Writing. His black-and-white sketches illustrate his prowess with the pencil. Reinemann’s show may start with quiet observations, but it erupts with his intuitive and raucous executions—his work is a collage of technique and wit. The work is emotional and playful. Take the time to study his drawings and paintings and you will have your own “ah-ha” moment. Look deeply.