Karl Weschke – Caliban 1978


Karl Weschke – Caliban 1978

Weshcke’s paintings are very emotive, and are often made from his direct observations and life experiences. He originally trained as a sculptor, but was inspired to paint whilst living on the coast of Cornwall. His paintings ‘Body on the beach’, ‘Caliban’ and his ‘Floating Figure’ series are responses to an accident he had where he almost drowned. In an interview for a television series, Weshcke describes how he was painting ‘Caliban’ whilst listening to a radio adapation of the Shakespearean play ‘The Tempest’, in which he found Caliban’s character relatable to the almost drowned figure on the beach. I find it fascinating how Weshcke has added to the foundation of using his own experience, and taking outside sources such as literature to add to the ‘scene’. The title of the work is the only part which gives that influence away.

His paintings are dark and moody, perhaps a metaphor for that time in his life. The lonely isolated figure, which looks discarded on the sand, has been painted with loose, rough brush strokes. I think this may represent the urgency and desperation he feels to that incident. His background landscape, although obviously coastal, is very simplistic and doesn’t take from the figure in the foreground. 

More of his work can be seen here.



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