Publications

Man in Art. - exhibition catalogue. - Riga: Maksla XO gallery, 2018. - p. 4.,11

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And once more "in the shadow of young girls in flower" (Compiler and editor-in-chief - Helena Demakova). - Riga: The Riga Marcel Proust Society, 2017. - 36 p.
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Kristaps. Journey. 2009. Maksla XO Gallery

Santa santissima
or
Portrait of a woman in an interior

 In these paintings by Kristaps the view is touched by something deeply intimate. What? Perhaps the complete opposite - in these paintings the view affects something deeply intimate. What? And anyway, can a view be touched by something? Looking into paintings it turns out that this can indeed be the case. This touch and affect, this contact is confusing and makes one wonder about one's black and white mind in a multicoloured universe, about one's nakedness in a world that is clothed, about one's life amongst death.

Wittgenstein once wrote: "I think colours set us a riddle" and "colours encourage us to turn to philosophy". There are people who say that in reality there are no colours - there are only light waves of various lengths and chemical reactions. Equally, we could say that a person's face can only really be seen in an x-ray. Faces as well as colours in the reality in which people live can only be seen by a person looking; they only exist in a seeing look (not surprising, then, that in parts of Siberia, instead of saying "I love you", people say "I see you".) And in the human world, a look is just as real; no, it is much more real than any object to which it is directed, except the face. Similarly, there are moments when people communicate from heart to heart, where people contact each other from look to look. A painting creates one of these situations. Although no one can see what another sees, contact between the one who, while seeing, paints and the one who sees what has been painted occurs in the look, from one looking at the other. The strangest thing to come out of this is the brevity of authenticity - it lasts for a moment, for the length of a look. However, this moment can leave traces.

A quick glance at Kristaps' paintings may leave the impression that there is nothing much there - just a woman and colours. However, on closer inspection we see that there is an awful lot there - colours and a woman. There is no lack of colours, brilliantly and generously calling to each other and harmonising; from the playful to the calm, from quiet to screaming, from sharp to gentle and mild but the woman wrapped in colours is alone; even where she is recumbent like the Magna Mater in a chariot drawn by lions with her entourage or family. The colours may change, the interior may change but the woman remains. Taking part in the interior are precise lines, naïve details and the lightness of Paris.

One could say that the interior is simply the "inside" or "internal" be it that of a house, room or soul. By going deeper and heightening this internality, at least in the Latin language we come to the intimate, to the very core, the very depths.* A woman in an interior can blend with the walls, furniture and ornaments, as long as it is not the interior of the soul, the inside of the soul. Intima Mea. There she blends with nothing. And "there" it is as deep as the heart. Here is the answer to what in these painting is touching what. The look touches Kristaps' interior, the intimate and his intimate look affects. Thus the naked look comes into contact with the uncovered heart but in the most open of hearts there is something untouchable, the sanctus. When someone reveals his inner self, everything becomes visible. One cannot hide oneself or anything else - only that which is inside comes out and moreover, everything.

The mind or inner light illuminates thoughts. Neither the inner nor the outer light is visible. "Light works in colours", wrote Goethe. Light only becomes visible in colours. But colours need light and most of Kristaps' paintings are saturated with colour. He keeps the woman he paints in the light. Keeping someone in the light is one of the ways of escaping and pulling someone else out of nothingness. There might not be any other possibilities. Otherwise light may become darkness.

Kristaps lives in colours and colours live with him. But a woman lives within him. One.

 Santa santissima.

Arnis Rītups