Israeli artist Beni Gassenbauer beautifully captures the light and atmosphere of the city he loves. See more of his watercolor portfolio by visiting his website.
I am a figurative watercolor painter. I was born in France in 1949.
Living in Jerusalem for almost 40 years, I am attracted by the light that gives the city its unique atmosphere. It is this game between the transparent air on one side and the shadows saturated with color on the other side that suggests a sense of secret mysteries.
My eye is also drawn by the city’s mysteries through ancient gates, window openings, balconies, backyards and shadowed passageways, where I always finds a vine arbor, a necklace of wisteria or a tuft of jasmine or bougainvillea, whose cool shadows highlight the architecture of white and gold stone.
These secret courtyards, gardens and stone stairs lead me to question what lies beyond the visible. My intention in the composition of my paintings is always to arouse the onlooker’s curiosity, to make them want to come into the painting and explore further.
What medium could better express the intrigue of light, air, stone and sky than watercolor?
This difficult medium, with no way to correct or alter, provides the necessary lightness and transparency. It allows me to paint -with poetry – the Mediterranean light that burst out in the brightness of the sun and penetrates the deepest shadow, creating breathtaking, intense color contrasts.
By recreating the unique effects of light and the sense of mystery that comes from value contrast and bright colors, I hope to invite you to explore the beauty of Jerusalem.
I try to enhance the city I love so much in my paintings, letting arise from them a serenity that will transmit a message of love and peace.
Beni Gassenbauer invites you to follow him on Facebook.