Relief 72-73-M-14. 1973. Relief. Pigment and papier mâché on wood. Verso signed, dated and with title and inscription. 124 x 84 cm (48.8 x 33 in). This is an element from a series of 14 parts which was shown at Galerie M in Bochum in 1973. [JS]. Schoonhoven's large-size reliefs from the 1960s and early 1970s are among the artist's most sought-after works on the international auction market.
PROVENANCE: Galerie Franz Swetec, Griesheim/Darmstadt (verso with two stamps). Galerie Reckermann, Cologne. Private collection North Rhine-Westphalia (acquired from previously mentioned in 1982).
Schoonhoven's fascination is all about the serial relief, which possesses great meditative value, both in the process of creation and in its observation. In this large-size work 96 squares, arranged in 4 vertical columns, unfurl into the room. The radical reduction to white, which was not pure in his early works but rather slightly shaded, allows the light to unfold a changeful play of light and shadows on the precise structure. 'The white reliefs are three-dimensional and hence palpable objects. They are objects, inasmuch as they are what they are, meaning they don't imitate or depict what they are not. [.] Schoonhoven's white reliefs are serial systems with a grid-like surface and a number of both same and equal indentations. The serial effect is achieved by the repetition of the same.' (Max Imdahl, quote after: Künstler. Kritisches Lexikon der Gegenwartskunst, vol. 9, p. 7).