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Marta Riniker-Radich

The Ballot Box, 2016
coloured pencil and pencil on paper
21.0 x 29.7 cm
Marta Riniker-Radich practices drawing like painting, thoroughly saturating the whole surface of a peach-toned sheet of A4 paper with color. Since her first days as an artist, the use of colored pencils has provided her with an infinite field of exploration, enabling her to freely express her imaginary world.

The intimate size of her works gives them a special density that shows the artist’s remarkable talent as a colorist. The intensity of her colors, which are sometimes supernatural, owes just as much to her choice of pencils as it does to the way she slowly superimposes several successive layers, resulting in a final texture – between transparency and depth – that is sometimes like a thick ink. However, the artist considers the technical aspect to be less important than the instinctive creation of images, with which she establishes a relationship that she characterizes as emotional.

Drawing from multiple sources (photographs, memories, mental images), Riniker-Radich explores an eclectic iconography, which she builds like an augmented reality devoid of human presence and infused with a feeling of strangeness that is both unsettling and fascinating. The motifs haunting her drawings often tend towards the fantastic, like the unnaturally large globs of toothpaste rippling in closed psychedelic spaces, their acidic, fluorescent color radiating artificiality.

Flirting with abstraction through a close focus that enables the artist to concentrate on colors and textures, Extremely virulent poisons – a mysterious floating form, midway between a carnivorous plant and the gaping jaws of an insect preparing to devour us – plunges the viewer into a dark world.

In a more recent series, the artist isolates delicate, familiar objects – a tray of finely decorated cupcakes, marbled eggs – which are confined to austere domestic interiors whose symmetrical perspective is perfectly rendered. Sharply contrasting with the refinement and fragility of objects depicted as weightless, these unescapable spaces seem deliberately designed to protect them, immortalizing an allegorical environment of control. Like de Chirico’s utopian landscapes, Marta Riniker-Radich’s drawings, in which time and atmosphere seem suspended, often provoke a contradictory feeling between magical enchantment and strange hallucination.
Marta Riniker-Radich, The Ballot Box, 2016