Frits Van den Berghe


Hellish ride

Oil on canvas
59 x 47.5 cm (23¹/₄ x 18³/₄ inches)
Framed: 81,5 x 71 cm (32 ¹/₈" x 28")
Signed lower left: FVBerghe

Signed lower left: FVBerghe

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Kunst van Heden. Catalogus Frits Van den Berghe - Gust. De Smet, exh. cat. (Antwerpen: J.-E. Buschmann/ Kunst van Heden, 1930), no. 11.
- Langui, E., Tentoonstelling Frits Van den Berghe, cat. (Gent: Kunst- en Letterenkring, 1948), no. 37.
- Matarazzo Sorrinno, Francisco & Sergio Milliet, 3a Bienal de Sao Paulo. Catalogo General (Sao Paulo: Ediam, 1955), p. 81, no. 64.
- De Ridder, A., E. Langui, P.-G. Van Hecke & J. van Lerberghe, Frits Van den Berghe (Bruxelles: Ed. de la Connaissance, 1957), p. 16, 35, no. 56 (ill.).
- Langui, E., Frits Van den Berghe. Catalogue raisonné de son oeuvre peint (Bruxelles: Laconti, 1966), no. 302 (ill.).
- Langui, E., Frits Van den Berghe 1883-1939. De mens en zijn werk (Antwerpen: Mercatorfonds, 1968), p. 310, no. 302 (ill.).
- Milo, J., Vie et Survie du Centaure (Bruxelles: Editions Nationales d'Art, 1980), p. 108, no. 96.
- Boyens, P., Frits Van den Berghe. Monografie (Gent: SD&Z/Pandora, 1999), p. 285, 311, 442, no. 627 (ill.).
- Boyens, P., Sint-Martens-Latem. Kunstenaarsdorp in Vlaanderen (Tielt/ Sint-Martens-Latem: Lannoo/ Art Book Company, 1992), p. 526 (ill.).
- Boyens, P. & G. Marquenie, Frits Van den Berghe, cat. (Oostende: PMMK, 1999), p. 164, 233, no. 135 (ill.).
- De Smet, J., Sint-Martens-Latem en de Kunst aan de Leie 1870-1970 (Tielt/ Sint-Martens-Latem: Lannoo/ Art Book Company, 2000), p. 210 (ill.).
- 1930, Antwerp, Paviljoen van de Wereldtentoonstelling, Tentoonstelling F. Van den Berghe en G. De Smet (Kunst van Heden), 28.06-10.07.1930, no. 11.
- 1948, Ghent, Koninklijke Kunst- en Letterkring, Frits Van den Berghe, 01-14.05.1948, no. 37.
- 1954, Maastricht, Bonnefantenmuseum, Frits Van den Berghe, 07-29.08.1954, no. 28.
- 1954, Hasselt, Zaal onder de Toren, Frits Van den Berghe, 04-20.09.1954, no. 23.
- 1954, Tilburg, Raadhuis, Frits Van den Berghe, 25.09-24.10.1954, no. 33.
- 1955, Sao Paolo, Museo de Arte Moderna, 3. Bienal, 06-10.1955, no. 64.
- 1955, Nürnberg, Fränkische Galerie am Marientor, 50 Jahre Belgische Kunst 1890-1940, 06.06-10.07.1955, no. 72.
- 1957, Amsterdam, Stedelijk Museum, Frits Van den Berghe, 15.02-18.03.1957, no. 50.
- 1957, Knokke, Gemeentelijk Casino, Xe Zomerfestival, Frits Van den Berghe, 07.07-08.09.1957, no. 56.
- 1962, Brussels, Palais des Beaux-Arts, Retrospectieve Frits Van den Berghe, 05-27.05.1962, no. 68.
- 1999, Ostend, PMMK, Frits Van den Berghe, 16.10.1999-13.02.2000, no. 135.
- Galerie Le Centaure, Brussels, 1932, no. 96
- Ernest van Zuylen, Liège
- Mrs. E. van Zuylen, Liège
In the second half of the 1920s, Frits Van den Berghe was inspired by the working methods of Max Ernst and other Parisian surrealists. Via the so-called "écriture automatique" they thought they could exclude all objectivity and give free rein to their own imagination. Van den Berghe was probably never more intuitive than in Hellish ride, a painting that seems to have emerged from the paint mass. Like a spring, browns, greens and ocher colors flow into one, at first glance, shapeless maelstrom. Slowly the gaze gets a grip on the whole and it appears that the painter has painted an amazon sitting on a bull. The composition is based on the ancient Greek story of the supreme god Zeus who kidnaps Europe in the form of a bull. But it immediately becomes clear how Van den Berghe deals freely with the story and places the classical motif in his own world of images and - in the words of Piet Boyens - turns it into a dark hell. Like many of his paintings, Hellish ride once belonged to the collection of Belgian art promoter Walter Schwarzenberg.
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