Huile sur toile
Anonymous III and IV are based on the photographs entitled Unspeaking Likeness taken by Arne Svenson during a trip between the United States and Mexico. These black-and-white photographs depict reconstructed portraits of murdered and mutilated people, reconstructions made at the request of judicial authorities in order to identify the victims who have been rendered unrecognizable. The presence-absence of these portraits is chilling and the framing accentuates these effects of strangeness. The work's relationship to photography can also be seen in the delicate reflection in the pupils.
A major figure of painting in recent decades, Luc Tuymans is known for his use of a restricted colour palette. He paints images taken from magazines or films and then reworks them into autonomous representations, creating, in his own words, “authentic fakes.” Each work originates from a previous image, which he allows to gestate until he is ready to paint it, always in twenty-four hours. These works aim at a certain emotional detachment, a distance from reality. The artist tracks the torments of the human condition: from the banality of evil hidden in a look, to the need to become accustomed with the idea of death.
Anonymous IV is presented for the first time at the "Ouverture" exhibition at the Bourse de Commerce in 2021.