Today is the last day of the Maria Lassnig exhibit "The Ninth Decade" in Vienna's Mumok.
Throughout her life she has made it clear that the only thing she knows for sure are the feelings that evolve inside the shell of her body. She coined the term "body-awareness painting" in the 1940s.
"Once I wearied of depicting nature analytically, I began looking for a reality which would be more quintessentially mine than what the outside world, and found the body that I inhibit to be by far the most real of all realities; I had only to become aware of it to be able to project its impression in fixed centres of gravity onto the image plane".
She developed a "color perception" all her own which she called "vertical or absolute color perception"."I would fix my gaze at a point of color till the 'local color' disappeared and the entire frightening relativity of color gave way to a larger range of options". This enabled her to differentiate between "bodily sensation colors, thought colors, stretching and pressing colors, smell colors, flesh colors, death and decomposition colors" and so on.
I'm thrilled with the colors that emerge - bright green, deep violet, turquoise, and with the playfulness and irony in her pictures.
At almost ninety, Maria Lassnig is still alert, full of life, spirit and creative power.
Here's an interview and some of her pictures.