Since the early ‘90s he has developed the painting further, towards what we still consider to be his foremost characteristic: An almost voluptuous baroque style, in which the motif is sketched quickly, with well-placed brushstrokes in sharp colours, against an often monochrome background. Figuration is suggested, with just enough information for the viewer to grasp it, yet still not enough for the viewer to be sure of what he has grasped. As such, the pictures exist in their own universe, somewhere between the concrete and the transcendental. The mode of painting helps to underscore a theme increasingly found in Gullvåg’s art: the transience of being. The moment is irrevocably gone; it exists only as a vague memory, perhaps supported by photographs or preserved objects. Disquiet assumes a central position in his pictures.
His childhood still provides an important source for inspiration, yet we eventually see how his own children are woven into the circle of motifs. The child’s adventures and experiences function as a means for further progress and actualisation – a corrective for Gullvåg’s own childhood.
At this time there is also a turn towards literary painting. In 1991 he began to work on a series the impetus for which was Hamsun’s novel Pan
(1894). This resulted in a larger cycle of paintings stretching into 1995. In 1995 the pictures were exhibited in Trondheim Art Museum, Stenersen Museum in Oslo, Galleri Vielle du Temple, Paris, and Hamarøy, in connection with the “Hamsun Days” festival. Moreover, an exhibition of lithographic works from the Pan series was shown in a number of countries under the auspices of the Norwegian Foreign Office.
Important paintings Portraits of John Ugelstad
(1992), professor of chemistry and close friend of the artist (a triptych was purchased by The Art Museum of Northern Norway, Tromsø) Pan-series Boy on a Chair