Traditional landscape paintings portray the physical environment and strive for perfect realism. Landscapes for Nachume will here on out signify the opposite. Though his landscapes strive too for authoritative illustration, they express instead that which cannot be seen in the material world.
The figural images in this series are shown in the process of passing through what Donald Kuspit calls, “a succession of states of extremely powerful flow.” Nachume evokes Picasso here, as he fragments and reorients depictive images. He will continue on the 20th century’s progression toward modern abstraction with a painting style based principally on line and movement, akin to Pollock.
These first landscapes are apocalyptic, foreboding; gray storms cracking open to reveal inky black depths. Surprisingly small in dimension, and etched in the unexpected medium of pencil, these paintings operate as peepholes, studies for what will later be broadcast across vast canvases.