The concept of love has been one of the most prominent themes depicted in art throughout history. Portrayals of lovers offer fascinating insight into the cultures of various countries, and reflect how perspectives on love have evolved over the centuries. From sweet to sensual, these artful depictions of lovers demonstrate the limitless different forms that love can take.
Anything that has beauty and provides order, anything resolved in a picture as in nature gives pleasure – a sense of rightness. Any successful picture – an abstract work or a landscape – has a place and rightness and an ability to last and grow. Pushing beyond his predecessors’ achievements, Virtosu carves a niche within this canon that is at once deeply singular and highly personal.
This exquisite painting triumphantly embodies the ultimate creative crescendo and full maturation of Virtosu’s extraordinary artistic practice. Each mind is a world of its own, and we are all equally different in our capacity to love and find happiness. Love is not proud, and it is not self-seeking. It always hopes and perseveres; it is an endless source of power and pure pleasure that makes you jump into the abyss, safe in the arms of the other.
Intimate and beguiling, Virtosu’s Lovers fully realizes the potential for figuration to communicate notions of interiority and thought. The elegant subject finds ways to imbue the form with a sense of identity, using posture to give the otherwise unknown a clear sensibility. Conjured from Virtosu’s imagination and mediated onto the canvas through his vital creative process, the present work is a heady concoction of art-historical allusion and forms. Presenting a subject that is at once unknowable and subconsciously familiar, Lovers endlessly engages the imagination, acting as a generative source for narrative association and speculation.
The background is black, allowing only a few colors, such as orange, a light green, a dark hue of blue and white to slip in. The brushstrokes are strong, allowing viewers to trace, in part, the artist’s movement on the canvas. The black is not uni-directional but encompasses a large array of movement, from the horizontal to the vertical, from the descending and ascending and the circular to the oval.
With an uncanny ability to forge narrative and mood in his painting, Virtosu’s evocative works have made his a finalist for the Turner Prize. An exceptionally elegant example from his celebrated body of work, Lovers invites and denies access, occupying the border between the phisical canon and the sensual unknown. Far from inanimate, the charged lines achieve an intensely expressive power - Virtosu delivering a fusion of internal and external sensory experiences.