Whereas Gilbert Swimberghe’s work can be initially placed within the expressionism inspired by Permeke, from 1956 his paintings leaned more and more towards the abstract and he soon worked in a totally non-figurative style.
From the 1960s, meditations on color, proportion and composition occupy an important place in his oeuvre. During this period a certain color is selected and fully explored, trying out all its variations. After briefly experimenting with pink, yellow and green, and for a longer period with white, the color blue triumphed in Swimberghe’s work from the 1990s onward, in all its forms and metamorphoses. Furthermore, he also chooses the triangular form as a common thread throughout his oeuvre. The tangents with fundamental painting, where one explores and exhausts basic principles such as line, color and texture in depth, are very evident.
In 1957, Swimberghe, together with, among others, art critic Jaak Fontier, founded the Bruges “Raaklijn” group, an association of like-minded artists who did pioneering work in support of avant-garde art. He also joins the Parisian “Groupe Mesure” and the “Gruppe INT 75” from the German city of Hagen. Numerous Belgian museums have works by Swimberghe in their collections, but works by Swimberghe can also be found in foreign collections. For example, works are housed in New York, Leverkusen, Milan, Rio de Janeiro and now also at Callewaert Vanlangendonck in Antwerp.