Raymond Zoilé (1923 – 2004) The introduction of a new discovered oeuvre
Raymond Zoilé : (1923 – 2004)
A window dresser, an invertor, interior architect, colorist, sculptor, artist, graphic designer, a visionary,….
It is hard to find a category where to place Raymond under. And it seems like every category is strange to Raymond Zoilé.
And yet , he mastered every discipline and combined them fluidly.
It seems like categories did not had influcene Raymond Zoilé and that he overlooked (other nicer word?)them.
Doing his thing day by day and year by year.
At the Royal Academy of Fine Arts Antwerpen (KASK) (1941 – 1943) he attended drawing and painting classes.
Followed by a University levelled classes at the National High Institute of Fine Arts (1943-1947)
Raymond attended painting classes by Constant Permeke and Baron Opsomer.
From 1947 -1951 he attended Monumental and Decorative arts. At the same Institute.
Raymond graduated as one of the best of his year, some known fellow students were Pol Mara, Vic Gentils, Ausloos and Jan Dries to name a few.
Descending from a bourgeois family Raymond found himself in a dilemma after graduating. The love of his life could not mary an artist. They married in 1953 and in 1954 Raymond Zoilé started working as a designer for the prestigious Grand Bazaar galleries.
The Grand Bazaar Galleries was the Belgian equivalent of Lafayette, printemps and Harrods. In a very short timespan Raymon Zoilé’s talent was recognised and he became the national head of design for the firm. Interior design, layout of publicity, displays, windows. He ran a huge team of assistants.
Soon people would gather in front of the Grand Bazaar shop window in the mornings to discover what magic the team of Raymond had performed.
In 1968 Raymond receives Golden Palms in the Order of the Crown for his extraordinay and groundbraking work.
But what is even more remarkable about Raymond Zoilé is that outside the spotlight and the hard working he maintained a true artist. Almost living a double live. The oeuvre that he established as an artist is astonishing and maybe one of the best kept secrets in Flemish post war art since a while.
40 years of labour, producing art ranging from figurative to abstract figurative. Lyrical abstract to abstract expressionist. From oil, gouache and pastel to polystyrene and epoxy. Paintings, assemblages, collages and sculpture.
Raymond will be remembered as a person with lot’s of humour but on the other han d it remains untill today the question why he never showed his work. Financial independence helped of course and maybe certain personal views lead tot his decission.
Around Raymond’s easel we found several quotes that gives us some insight in his thinking.
“Je ne les comprends pas du tout. Elle ne sont pas litérature. Elle son seulementun arrengement pictural d’images que m’obsédent.”
In the nextcoming months we will be preparing a first publication. The introduction show runs at the gallery in the Kloosterstraat 156 Antwerpen till 26th of June. We are aslo proud to announce to have accquired the full representation of the estate.
Please feel free to contact us for more information.