Northern Summer

Olev Subbi Northern Summer 1997 acrylic, oil, masonite 90 × 120 cm

Similarly to the painting About 50 m Above Sea Level, completed five years previously, this work of art depicts a reclining nude who has hidden her face from the viewer. However, the overall atmosphere of the painting is much brighter and happier than in About 50..., and the artist preferred a realistic sky this time to a totally abstract composition. Gently moving clouds, the uniform anonymous landscape bathed in sunlight and the title of the piece all bring to mind romantic and positive associations. With the white sheet under the naked body, Subbi returned to his early working years, in which he often depicted white textiles (cf. Nude on White Cloth). Another recurring motif is the cross, rendered with thin colourful lines (cf. Piazza del Pozzo). Composition-wise, the surface of the painting is divided into three horizontal layers: first, the realistic sky, then the semi-abstract landscape, and finally, the completely abstract colour zone with the shadow from the body thrown over it, blurring the border between what is realistic and what is abstract.