Nico Franz

1981 Cottbus, DE

Moving Piet II - Return of the Piet, 2017


Moving Piet II - Return of the Piet, 2017

Image description

Three equally wide, narrow black horizontal lines and three equally high, black vertical lines are shown on a white background. the horizontal and vertical lines extend across the entire width and height of the painting, respectively. An exception is a horizontal line in the lower right corner that extends from the right edge to the first vertical line, and another, the first vertical, that is drawn only to the second black horizontal line. In total, therefore, there are seven black lines.

The crossing of the black lines creates areas in between, which were painted in three corners with the primary colors red, yellow and blue. The lower left corner was omitted. If color areas lie directly next to each other, they have the same hue. The areas of the three primary colors are positioned in different corners of the painting. In this way, four red, two blue and two yellow color areas have been created, for a total of eight. The two yellow areas are positioned one above the other in the upper right corner, the two blue ones next to each other in the lower right and the four red ones in a two by two matrix in the upper left corner of the picture.

Image Explanation

"Moving Piet II - Return of the Piet" is the sequel to the 2014 work "Moving Piet", also by Nico Franz. As in the first version, Nico Franz uses a painting of unknown title by Piet Mondrian for his copyist work. The painting was transferred into a digital form and smoothed in color and shape. Inaccuracies in the brushwork, different line thicknesses, as well as color differences of the original were not taken over.

Here, as in the previous work "Moving Piet", Nico Franz dissolves the static nature of Mondrian's original and visualizes one of the many possible interpretations in a dynamic process. Unlike in "Moving Piet", however, this time he no longer ventures into space, but apparently leaves it at the surface.

Mondrian and the symmetry

Nico Franz takes up also with this work, as in the predecessor, the question whether Piet Mondrian could not have committed a mistake with his picture, in which he disregarded the symmetry imposing itself compellingly by the selection of the number of the surfaces. In other words, whether he did not mistakenly assume the positioning of the lines as a condition for the resulting surfaces instead of the positioning of the surfaces as a condition for the lines. Nico Franz uses this question as a starting point for an autobiographical travel narrative.

Image interpretation

Act I

[Translate to english:]

The love red
A red double block in a hopeless cell. The floor is pulled out from under him. He falls to the ground.

The fighting blue
The hard impact of the collision, acts the jumping of a blue, which is forced by gravity, despite desperate attempts to hold on to the yellow above, in its urge to expand now to the left still to dodge. It divides itself thereby. One part dashes daringly ahead, makes room for itself. The other meanders after it. But then: a blue that no longer knows what to do and now pauses.

The hopeful yellow
Disappointed by the failure of the blue, the yellow now follows, but initially fails in its attempt to sit on the highest level, and slips down to a second. Spurred on by the view of the furiously failed blue, yellow succeeds in moving the border of this level upwards.

The searching red
Inspired by this, Red, which had previously been parked in the left corners, now also seeks to free itself. Striving for order, it recognizes its place, still at the edge but at least in every corner.

The final image of this first act is a ray of hope after the highly chaotic beginning, even if not the one hoped for. Some even say, an outlook that disappoints. But it is more than seemed possible at the beginning of the journey. The order seems constant.

Act II

The horizon is shifting now. The view into a new sky, into the light. Lingering and reflecting. Saying goodbye. Waking from the dream, a new light now appears. One could say, like the second. But it is now a different place.