For this installation Donald Schenkel sought to develop a more mature form of the vertical gradient than made earlier. Complex and colourful transitions make way for a gradient with more calm and hazy tones. It has an inherent consistency in the build-up of the gradient which contains certain lanes, while there also exists a play in the width of certain colors. This way, some parts can be considered color fields and others more as sizzling lines. Each canvas touches a color at the edge that seems to form the starting point for the next canvas. The continuous ‘infinity’ of the image is interrupted on the one hand and emphasized at the same time. However, the resulting continuous color transitions were not predetermined, but arose during the process of making them. This connects to his working method in which the works and gradients always refer to each other in subtle and formal ways, creating a strong, iconic, visual language. In addition, characteristic to his practice, this work shares an element of illusion whereby the shapes in which the gradient is presented are actually at odds with the illusory effect of depth. It is the material aspects of the object itself that determines its perception.
Developed specifically for the architecture of the new gallery space, his newest installation work Polylith with Monolith (of Verticals) brings together four vertical canvases that form one big installation surrounded by numerous painted chunks of glass, inviting viewers to move around the work while remaining a level of distance. This installation enters into a relationship with the gallery architecture , as the work of art consists of a cube positioned in a space defined by geometric shapes and pillars. Naturally this raises questions about the boundaries between the work of art and the space it is exhibited in, and the difference between an installation and an environment.