No color combination has more vitality than red and green, and no other combination has potential to induce so much nausea from oversaturated application, most commonly in wrapping paper on a magical day like today. This is the one day in the whole year I find myself longing to be jewish, just for the Hanukkah blue and silver.
There have been a few paintings I made work with a red/green palette. I used pyrrole black (a dark green) and transparent earth red with cadmiums in my last series to lovely effect. Together, the two transparent compliments made black. With white, the green turned a beautiful turquoise. Some mix of the two made a beautiful neutral.
Below is a collection of paintings with red and green used for the dominant palette. You’ll see a couple from Delacroix, who wrote about the usefulness of complementary colors for shadows, and to increase energy in his paintings. You’ll also see a few by impressionists, who frequently added blue to balance the two. It’s a tricky combination to maneuver, but if you can do it, they give an energy to the painting can’t be matched.