Miha Maleš, Embrace (The sun in May), 1930

Published: 11.10.2018

Miha Maleš, Embrace (The sun in May), monotype, 1930.

Maleš put a love couple in the embrace in the central axis of the picture. The low-ranking scene is a meadow that is sputtered, with schematic rosaries, and the horizons are also closed by schematically drawn mountains. The representation of the horizon is indicated by the whiteness of the sheet, with a shade of blue on one side and the yellow sun on the other, which associates well with the depiction of the volatile and changing sky in May.

This is typical of Maleš’s theme: mild eroticism, love emotion, and capture of the passing moment. In this part on paper, Maleš combines his graphic talent, the sense of colour and symbolism. In addition, it was created at a time when its linearity under the influence of the new reality is transferred from the plateau to the plasticity. The work is deliberately sincere and indifferent, created under the influence of European tradition, but placed in the Slovenian context. In the face of a man we get to know his own self-portrait.

Miha Maleš (1903-1987), one of the founders of Slovenian modern graphics, is represented by the technique of monotype, one of the graphic techniques, which means that he also has a bridge to painting work. The work is one of his early monotypes, which colourfully enrich the graphic sheet, but at the same time already indicates the beginnings of his painting work in the narrower sense. In these delicate and fragile parts, the graphic element is transferred to the side of the colour, although the graphic contours, the contours and even the decorative patterns painted with a brush tip never slip out.