This painting is part of the series 'Silence and The City' (see info about the series below) started in September 2019 and completed... Read More
This painting is part of the series 'Silence and The City' (see info about the series below) started in September 2019 and completed in September 2020.
About the painting 'The Light of Silence'
The series is inspired by New York City and contemplating and finding direction in daily life. Started in September 2019 pre- COVID 19, when busy energetic streets were the most normal thing in the world. The direction in this painting is reaching to the spiritual world, to heaven, trying to connect daily life with the spiritual. The Cathedral Church of St. John The Divine (NYC), the viewpoint of the spectator and the trees all strongly point upwards and give a feeling that these elements are all longing to embrace the connection with the spiritual world.
About the series 'Silence and The City'
The series ‘Silence and The City’ is inspired by New York City and the search
for contemplation and inner silence in everyday life, about finding meaning in
life and the connection of the spiritual world with everyday life.
Every individual is confronted with a universal question how to find
meaning in life. Van de Graaf feels a strong connection with the vibrance of
New York City, but is also aware that searching meaning in life is sometimes
harder when life is going that fast. The contrast between contemplation and
the busy city life of New York City in a normal setting has been a great inspiration for him. He admires the ability of the city to be a melting pot of all
kinds of people and really fell in love with the city. With this series he fulfills
his wish to devote at last one series on New York.
Van de Graaf draws inspiration from both the time he lived in New York City, 2006 - 2007, and his trip to New York in September 2017 and November 2019. When he was walking in New York City he was struck by moments
of silence by different kind of places he documented. This documentation has
been the starting point of this series.
The layout of New York City and its historic buildings are a major source of
inspiration for the compositions of the paintings. Van de Graaf was struck by the beauty of the contrast between the oldest buildings in New York City,
amongst others its churches, and the (modern) high rise buildings next to
them. He experienced these silent places in the city like little islands of silence
within the busy city life.
Van de Graaf is using several (architectural) metaphors in his paintings to
express these themes. An example are the crossroads in the paintings which
he uses as a metaphor for important moments in life when the choices of the
turns you take determine directions in life. In this series he also introduces the
square shaped canvas because all sides are equal and no direction is
determined by its shape.