Another dominant theme in this exhibition of paintings by Lars Lerin was a number of large paintings of suburbian apartment buildings. In my experience, this is a very unusual choice of subject for a painter. Watercolours especially we tend to associate with idyllic nature scenery, and perhaps country houses and cottages - but certainly not the dull concrete suburbs built back in the late 60s and early 70s. And yet so many people live there. In Sweden, we refer to these suburbs and buildings as the Million Programme. The aim of the programme was to build a million new "affordable" dwellings in a 10-year period when the population was growing rapidly. I think these paintings are really a great tribute to and documentation of the changes taking place in our society over the past 50 years or so.
A lot of the people living in these suburbs have their origin in other cultures. I think Lars Lerin has managed to catch that beautifully in this painting dominated by a large "oriental" type of carpet in the foreground.
Close-up photo of a little piece of that carpet.
Above: A two-piece painting of an apartment house as you see it when you pass by outside in the evening.
Below: Details from the same painting (close-up photos put together in a collage by me). There are things going on in almost every lit window, which you don't see from a distance but only when you get up close. Just as in life.
Some paintings had been folded into blocks like this.
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In a third installment I will show you some of his nature paintings.