Gerard Mossé, “Near There”, 36 1/2” x 60 1/2”, oil on linen, 2012-2015
At this point, one could argue that Mossé advances a “critique” of Western painting and its devices. The advantage of this argument is that it allows us to assign his art a purpose: to call a long and still active tradition into doubt. But what would be the point of that? There is no sensible reason to cast doubt on the familiar techniques of Western painting. Moreover, “critiques” are the task of critics and theoreticians. As an artist, Mosse does not question what is established. He seeks the new, the previously unimaginable. Moving from dark to bright hues, from blue-violet to red-yellow, he acknowledges the full range of colors, and then leaps beyond color to light. The result is mesmerizing, but - to repeat the inevitable question - what is the point? That, as the artist says, is for the viewer to decide.
By evoking the full panoply of colors, Mosse symbolizes all of existence. As color becomes light, existence illuminates itself. Matter becomes thought, or so I imagine.Of course, the imagination is restless and the next moment it occurs to me that Mosse intends his vertical forms as symbols of individuals, each one distinctively defined. Thus they are separate. Yet they occupy the same space, for this space is generated by the light - the consciousness - they share. Mosse gives us images of our way of being with one another. Other interpretations are possible. The point is not to insist that one of them is correct but, rather, to stay open to further possibility. Ultimately, this is what makes his art new: its power to inspire inventive responses. Thus he draws us, as creators, into the space he has created.