Saturday, 23 May 2020

Peter Morrens / James Castle

James Castle
22 x 26 cm  recto/verso
from : James Castle, Show and Store 
Museo Reina Sofia, Madrid ( 2011)


James Castle, a deaf-mute and unskilled artist from Idaho (USA) made beautiful, intense drawings of his rural surroundings all his life: mostly barns and attics in complex perspectives. He made his drawings with coaldust from his stove mixed with his saliva, mostly on found paper. He often populated the barns with his own drawings and with 'friends', drawn schematic figures.

In a run down barn in Diepenheim (NL) I made the installation 'Lichtwit': three wall-filling trompe-l'oeil's of open drawings, painted directly on the wall: full drawings of blank pages. You could look at the installation through a window in the fourth wall while standing on a small podium. The viewer became an integral part of the work.

The repro's come from catalogs: the place where we had most encounters with works of art in the 20th century. Both choices play with duplicity: Castle's drawings are on both sides of the paper. My drawing is a renewed 'cover' drawing, based on the original in situ installation (2014).

Peter Morrens, 2020

Peter Morrens (BE)
lichtwit, 2014
'ik tel 37 tekeningen, ik had er 52 verwacht'
posture editions no 10, 2014 

Saturday, 9 May 2020

Charlotte Besuijen / Colijn de Nole

Colijn de Nole
Tomb of Brederode 
Avender sandstone, Baumberger sandstone, hardstone, wood 
388 x 450,3 x 328 cm 
Grote Kerk, Vianen NL

Tomb of Brederode, fragment
Baumberger sandstone
Grote Kerk, Vianen NL

The Brederode chapel of the church in Vianen contains the tomb of Reinoud III van Brederode (1556) and Philippote van der Marck (1536). The Brederode grave monument is an example of a memento mori monument: the recumbent effigies depict Reinoud and Philippote as if they had recently died, in stark contrast to the single transi below it, which depicts a deceased person in an advanced state of decomposition. In the Middle Ages, this type of monument was often designed to remind the passersby of the transience and vanity of earthly life, as well as to instil confidence in resurrection.

In the lecture ‘Subjective Histories of Sculpture’ Lucy Skaer also speaks about a transi tomb, namely that of John de Arundel (1435). Skaer adds an extra phase to the "stages" of the monument by including the mortal remains, which are under the tomb and out of sight, in her observation:
“The tomb can be read from top to bottom; the diminishment of the person from recent death through the transitional macabre decomposition to the actual remains. Or from the bottom to the top; from the corpse to the enduring object of the person as he or she was in life.”

This is different in the Brederode monument. After all, there is only one transi on the grave monument, while there are two effigies on the top plate. Thus the transi is not a representation of the bodies of the couple themselves, but a general representation of impermanence. As passersby we cannot relate to an experience of death, but the monument does reveal the mutability of death.

In my work Transi each of the drawings after the initial one follows on from the one before. As such the work knows several stages. Together, these nine drawings create a space that spans time and encapsulates transience and transformation.

With special thanks to Margreet and Hans Kluit on behalf of the Grote Kerk Vianen.

Charlotte Besuijen, 2020

Charlotte Besuijen (NL)
graphite and papier-mâché on paper, wood
100 x 293 x 270 cm
on display at: RuimteCAESUUR, Middelburg NL

Saturday, 18 April 2020

Romee van Oers / Giorgio Morandi

Giorgio Morandi
Natura Morta
oil on canvas

In this painting, the objects that are placed close to each other appear to have more mass then a single object that is placed higher in the image. A mass of objects exerts pressure on the adjacent empty space with an object above it. A strange tension arises between the group of objects, the detached object and the empty space between them. The empty space seems almost a presence.

The lines that represent the shadows between two objects also have a clear presence. Morandi gives a single line a lot of responsibility. The objects are almost reduced to shapes and lines, but are never only that. He places the strength of a line in the tension between his simplicity as a line and his existence as something else.

It touches me how Morandi almost always used a number of everyday objects such as pots, jugs and vases as the starting point for his work. How he could give so much attention to such a simple, everyday subject. The objects have a kind of human appearance. A tension between things has been created with great care. A tension that you can compare with relationships between people. 

When a painter's gesture is a painter's gesture but at the same time something else I find interesting. I use the properties of paint: The width of the brush stroke, the transparency of paint, the precision in how the shape is set and how the paint stroke overlaps. But it always refers to something existing. What is important to me is that the image feels close. This is mainly about attention and simplicity. Attention while observing the object, carefully placing shapes in relation to each other, mixing the correct intensity of paint and the final determination of the frame of the painting.

Romee van Oers, 2020

Romee van Oers (NL)
Vier rollen
175 x 190 cm
egg-tempera on linen

Saturday, 4 April 2020

Klaas Gubbels / Rembrandt

Klaas Gubbels studio wall with
Rembrandt, two self portraits: newspaper clipping and etching print (bottom)
Klaas Gubbels, two small paintings (top)

Self portrait
newspaper clipping

Two self-portraits by Rembrandt and two small works by myself hang on the mantelpiece in my studio. I feel the same passion as Rembrandt. I think he belongs in my studio, and he never leaves. He looks at me all day to see if I am doing my job well.

Klaas Gubbels, 2020

Saturday, 21 March 2020

Horst Keining / Andy Warhol

Andy Warhol
Camouflage Beuys
283 x 210 cm
acrylic, silkscreen on canvas
(from d. Katalog Paris)

In his time, Gustave Courbet battled against received normative aesthetics and wanted to paint anything and everything — more than just ’things of beauty’. Warhol, too, would explore anything and everything for its value as pictorial material.  
His exhibition at the Moderna Museet in Stockholm in 1968 bore the title, ‘ALL IS PRETTY’. For me, against the backdrop of art informel, Warhol was a revelation.

Horst Keining, 2020 

Horst Keining (DE)
Gottfried Wiegand
33 x 24 cm
synthetic resin on canvas

Saturday, 7 March 2020

Jos van Merendonk / Martin Barré

Martin Barré
67 - AZ – 2
113 x 105 cm

When I saw Martin Barré’s (Nantes 1924 - Paris 1993) work for the first time in Paris in 1982 I was taken aback by the simple and brutal quality of the spray works. The vitality of the material as tool and idea was not just an eyeopener but has proven to be an ongoing influence. 

Jos van Merendonk, 2020

Jos van Merendonk (NL)
Detail Wall Installation 
Parts Project, The Hague

Saturday, 22 February 2020

Till Gerhard / Edvard Munch

Edvard Munch
oil on canvas
140,5 x 137 cm

Till Gerhard (DE)
oil on cotton
160 x 140 cm