2021 BIGGEST 22 CARAT GOLD LEAF PAINTING EVER MADE
BIGGEST 22 CARAT GOLD LEAF PAINTING EVER MADE
In 2018, B-art (Bart Stillekens) started experimenting with 22-carat gold leaf in his artworks. Based on the positive results of the experiment he decided to take it a step further by turning the raw material into real works of art. Which was the birth of the 2020 “Monochrome” edition. This edition consists of paintings and sculptures of various sizes, in which 22-carat gold leaf, silver leaf, and copper leaf draw all the attention. This painting is the largest painting ever made with 22-carat gold leaf!
WHY A PAINTING FULL OF GOLD?
B-art: “Over the past few years I have delved into incorporating 22-carat gold leaf into my paintings & sculptures.22-carat gold leaf is extremely expensive and intensive to work with. Since It is wafer-thin it’s extremely difficult to position the material correctly. Besides my paintings from the “Monochrome” series, I worked on this big masterpiece for a few years. This particular painting consists out of 5 layers of gold leaf, and each layer contains more than 500 leaves of 22-carat gold. During creation, the gold leaf is treated with several layers of special glue and varnish to protect it. In the end, nothing can be seen from the base canvas anymore. The result is simply a painting full of gold. A project of this scale takes a tremendous amount of time and hard work to set up and execute, but after all, I am very excited and proud of the result. Gold has a strong luxuriously expensive appearance, which it is after all.”
GOLD LEAF FACTS
Gold leaf is gold that has been hammered, which is still largely done manually, or rolled down to a thickness of 0.0001 mm. To produce a sheet of a tenth of a micrometer thick an alloy with high formability is required, and so gold leaf usually is an alloy of gold and one or more other metals such as titanium, silver, and/or copper. After hammering or rolling, the gold leaf is cut into pieces of about 10x10 cm and alternately stacked into a package with paper between each sheet. This stacking and hammering continues until the desired thickness is obtained, all while eliminating any protrusions in the process, until the package has the desired weight. Did you know that a kilogram of gold can be rolled out so that it can cover an area the size of two tennis courts (500m2)? Or that most of the gold has been around as long as the sun & earth arose some 4.6 billion years ago?!