From the very beginning of his career as an artist painter, Roelof de Roo (1944) has specialised in urban scenery. The purpose of these atmospheric paintings of the capital cities of Copenhagen, Berlin and Amsterdam is to isolate and preserve one of countless passing moments of magic that constitute our existence. Those moments, that are experienced in the abandoned streets, squares and stations of those northern European capitals, offer us the most magical of blends of seasons, their lights and weather conditions.
Even though the style of painting of the scenes and objects seems precise and accurate, reality is regularly modified for compositional reasons. Furthermore, suggestive figuration helps to evoke the symbolism of the location: an empty station, a desolate street or a park at dusk. And it is in fact dusk that is prominently present in the works of Roelof de Roo, since the sought magic of reality is most noticeable in those moments of the day.
Influences of “Magic Realism” and “Neue Sachlichkeit” are clearly discernable throughout Roelof de Roo’s oeuvre. But also the well-known atmosphere that we see in Scandinavian painting is apparent. The ‘Nordisk Lys’ or ‘Northern light’ is indeed excellent for studying and capturing the above mentioned magic.
Exploration of reality is what Roelof de Roo seeks to do. Or with the words of the famous late Dutch painter Dick Ket: “My purpose is, to depict what is around us, but that we do not yet know”. In that way many of the paintings invite the viewer to reflect, because behind the visually recognisable lies another yet uncovered truth.
Works of Roelof de Roo have entered private as well as museum collections in the Netherlands and abroad.