In the summer of 1955, Yehezkel Streichman and his son stayed in the artists’ village of Ein Hod. Streichman created this large-scale painting according to sketches made during that vacation, and completed it in 1956.
The elements of reality represented in this painting are hinted at in a stylized manner. One may discern a horizon line, a blue sky and clouds, a glimpse of the sea, various forms of vegetation, and buildings whose details include latticed windows, stairs, or doors. The artist’s general approach in this painting indicates the existence of one relatively stable vantage point from which he views the landscape, and which is based on a naturalistic representational strategy.
A Mediterranean feel suffuses this painting: it is dotted with flashes of cool blue that echo the sea on the horizon, and is imbued with an atmosphere of sensual festivity. The visible elements of reality partake of an aesthetic system in which line, color, and matter become the independent components of a universally valid language. The compositional structure is based on a grid of vertical and horizontal lines that divide it, like scaffolding, into rectangular areas – each of which is treated somewhat differently in terms of color and brushstrokes. The composition’s abstract framework is exposed, becoming an inseparable part of the entire painterly system.
This painting is one of the high points in a series of large, energetic, stylized, and freely painted landscapes; this series constituted an important stage in the development of Streichman’s work – from paintings that directly referred to reality to almost entirely abstract images. The ambitious, abstract style developed by Streichman made him into one of the prominent founders of modern Israeli art.