Bernd Ribbeck, a Swedish painter (1882- 1944) whose spiritual paintings were diagrams of her occult beliefs. With her works she purported to communicate with the soul, opening a door to another level of perception. She was an artist who practiced in isolation from the mainstream of her Avant-Garde contemporaries, and there is a sense of potentiality that remains latent in the work?s utopian ideals. Ribbeck expresses interest in the way religious icons function, with no gap between what is represented and the image as an object: during prayer they can perform the same role as the depicted deity itself. The small scale of Ribbeck?s paintings and works on paper function in a comparable way: inviting the viewer to experience them intimately, reading their pictorial forms whilst leading the gaze into a transcendental realm.

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