Portrait of Emmanuel Looten, Karel Appel
Karel Appel
Portrait of Emmanuel Looten
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Karel Appel

Portrait of Emmanuel Looten, 1956

146 x 114 cm
Physical Description
Oil on canvas
Inventory Number
SG 1262
Acquired in 1987
Not on display


About the Work

We are confronted with a larger-than-life explosion of Emmanuel Lootens’s head in yellows, blues, whites and reds. Karel Appel’s portrait of his Belgian poet friend is part of the series ‘Têtes d’otages’ (hostage heads). In one excessive and rushed painting, the intense facial expression has been fixed on the canvas. The inky black background and the colour bulging at the edges of the painting form a sharp contrast with the colours of the head and thus increase its brilliance. The dominant red emphasises the sitter’s fiery character and vitality.

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