Featured Artist Jonathan Raddatz

Artist Jonathan Raddatz creates symbolic paintings that have a primal energy. Enjoy his portfolio, and visit his website to see more of his work.

 

Apis Osiris

“Apis Osiris” oil on canvas, 40″ x 60″

 

An important facet of my art is rooted in free form paintings I have idiosyncratically labelled as “neo-symbolic.”  I have a kinship with the European surrealists as like them, my aim lies in recuperating the archetypal content of the subconscious. Max Ernst stands out as an important influence.

 

New World Hierophant

“New World Hierophant” oil on canvas, 36″ x 48″

 

Also critical to my artistic program are the abstract expressionists that exploded unto the New York art scene in the 1940s and 50s – especially Mark Rothko and Jackson Pollock. Like the work of these painters, my goals are profoundly anti-rational.

 

Dirty Secrets Buried Deep in the Valley of Hinnom

“Dirty Secrets Buried Deep in the Valley of Hinnom” Oil, mixed medium on canvas, 24″ x 48″

 

I am interested in “reverse engineering” the mythical narratives that tell our story as a species. In the end, we are defined by our memories, and our memories define our myths. While absolutely subjective , memory myths are also absolutely real, and absolutely a part of us regardless of where we live and what age we live in. What has happened before will happen again.

 

Mother of the Living [Dead]

“Mother of the Living [Dead]” oil on canvas, 36″ x 24″

Through my paintings, I am sharing an irrational reality felt most keenly during the creative process. This grand inner and outer realm is made up of a mythical causality of numinous yet fleshy themes. These paintings aim to obliterate the fragile notion of human progress.

 

The Mark of the Beast

“The Mark of the Beast” oil on canvas, 30″ x 36″

 

Like us, these paintings are tribal, savage, tragic, and governed by threatening cosmic forces beyond our control. When I’m painting, I feel like I’m gazing into the abyss and like Nietzsche rightly points out, when you gaze long enough into the abyss, it gazes right back at you.

 

A Pale Green Horse

“A Pale Green Horse” oil on canvas, 36″ x 36″

 

Faith, Myth and Reality are the key operative terms that fuel my work. Human notions of our own depravity, faith, deep desires (be they spiritual or physical), or of what lies on the other side of human existence after death can only be discussed subjectively regardless of how objectively real each of these things may be.

 

The Abduction of Persephone

“The Abduction of Persephone” oil on canvas, 20″ x 16″

 

The language of absolute reality is forcibly symbolic, because symbols defy linear logic and transcend reason by their ability to sustain paradox; that is why my art emphasizes the symbolic. Specifically because of their multivalent tiers of meaning, symbols point the way to a larger reality directly informing the one we process and experience on a strictly sensual level.

 

The Watchers

“The Watchers” oil on canvas, 28″ x 22″

 

My interaction with paint, surface and the tools mediating the two is motivated by a desire to tap into primal archetypal memories that are at the root of every human’s ontology. My working hypothesis is that an effective way to release these primordial memories buried in the substratum of the collective unconscious is through an instinctive interaction with the basic elements involved in painting.

 

I Wish You Could See What I Can See

“I Wish You Could See What I Can See” acrylic on canvas, 26″ x 24″

 

These interactions are carried out in a ritual manner where every action is laden with heavy symbolic meaning: pigments, patterns, tools used and the manner in which they are used, all take on a primordial significance that I imagine has accompanied this type of art all the way back to the caves of Chauvet and Lascaux. The key lies in entering into a mindset where all actions revolving around the painting are highly ritualized in order to prompt an altered state of consciousness that allows one to “access” the memory (or myth) below the threshold of rational mediation.

 

The Power Behind the Throne

“The Power Behind the Throne” oil on canvas, 48″ x 24″

 

For me, painting has become synonymous with both physical and spiritual survival. Should the lights go out and we all find ourselves gathered round about the fire in the company of clan, you will find me with a carbonized stick in my hand scrawling images of the latest version of ancient history on a stone as old as the earth.

 

Comments

  1. S. Blanchette says:

    Our collection includes eight pieces by Jonathan Raddatz to date. Each holds a place of honour and all stimulate admiration and debate whenever we open our home to guests. Our purchases are testament to our belief that Raddatz’s works are not only worthwhile investments, but also meaningful artistic acquisitions for novice and experienced collectors alike. As an autodidact, who is relatively early in his artistic career, Raddatz’s output and style will surely continue to evolve. We look forward to witnessing and supporting his artistic growth and success.

  2. J. Montblanch says:

    Mr. Raddatz’s paintings confronts the viewer with bold, aggressive imagery that is only tempered by the artist’s profound intellect and sensitivity to his subject matter. An impressive and thought-provoking body of work.

  3. How great it is to be introduced to an artist that says something so meaningful. In an era where Art is reducing itself to beauty, or so complicated that its meaning can only be understood by the elite of the art industry, I find in J.E Raddatz’ art something so refreshingly different that touch the soul as much as the eyes. What I love with him, is that he doesn’t only paint, he more importantly say. Great work!

  4. well balanced vibrant warm colors. You bring out the paintings as if they were a 3D. I would one day like to own one of Jonathan’s Painting. for those who already own them they are a treasure. his style captures my imagination like no other painter does. I guess because they some them have a religious background in them.
    Kenyanya, monument sculptor.

    • Thanks so much Peter… for anyone reading this, Peter is a incredibly gifted sculptor based in Nairobi Kenya. He works with wood and stone. I am the proud owner of one his pieces. Heavy (both the mass and the thematic gravitas). His work is profound and drop dead gorgeous! A pleasure to have you drop by here Peter!

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