The process of Wouter van de Koot

The figurative work of Wouter van de Koot consists of paintings, drawings and installations with narrative characteristics. Typical are the attention to detail, the use of negative space and the theatrical atmosphere of his work. In carefully arranged scenes he deals with themes such as  human vulnerability, consolation, mutual dependence, trust, beauty and decay. Sources of inspiration are the medical world, religious representations of sin and hell, images of people in conflict areas, and horror movies.

By ‘cutting out’ parts of the depicted figure he wants to create a distance towards the original indiscrete and explicit images. The tension between the explicit visual language and the esthetic, sensitive and colorful appearance of the work can be conceived as a mockery of the atrabilious or melancholy. For van de Koot creating new works is a way to capture the magic of everyday life and to relate to human vulnerability and shortcomings.

In this film by Stijn De Ryck, you can see a performance and his process showing how he works:

View some work on Ponyhof Gallery website.

1, 2, Drei – Anna Virnich at FIAC (off)icielle

This year, I decided to only go to (OFF)icielle, the off part of the FIAC, which hosted some galleries that I knew have a good programme (Rod Barton, Elaine Levy, Stigter van Doesburg, ..). These are usually located on the first floor of the Grand Palais where one can find the most interesting selection of the FIAC, but this year were secluded at the other side of Paris. I must say I was quite disappointed by the overal quality of this new venture that is (OFF)icielle (except for the galleries I knew already) and I am not sure about the added value of it.  One pleasant surprise was to meet the dynamic guys from Drei Gallery in Cologne, who presented a refreshing artist Anna Virnich, who oscillates between painting and sculpture. Although she is best described as a sculptor working with fabric, there is something very painterly about her work.

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The 30 year old German artist had a solo show last spring in Drei When you Dance with the Devil.

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Copyright: DREI

 

And she was shown at NADA by DREI last year (more pictures by Dust magazine here):

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copyright: Dust Magazine

Anna Virsnich in her studio.

 

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Copyright: artistintheworld.com

 

Reader’s Digest

Impressive first exhibition outside his gallery wall, Sebastien Ricou shows American painter Keith J. Varadi at L’ancienne Société Bruxelloise d’Electricité. A must-see before 25 October. 

“Things aren’t much wilder, I don’t think, than they were back then. Of course I just read about all the goings-on now.” is the press release.

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L’ancienne Société Bruxelloise d’Electricité
Rue Vanderstichelen 106, Brussels 1080, Belgium map

Date:  September 11 – October 25, 2014

Hours: Saturday 2pm–6pm or by appointment

www.keithjvaradi.com

Jill Mulleady, a dancing painter

The gallery Island in Brussels is showcasing work of artist Jill Mulleady in a solo show “El Dorado” until next Sunday. The artist, who used to be active in theatre, shows her latest work in this exhibition, replacing the canvas by iridescent plastic sheets and integrate painting in installations. 

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After intending to become a theater director, she heads back to childhood favourite activity painting and attended the Chelsea College of Art. Her uncle was a painter and stimulated her to paint by giving her brushes with her name engraved on them when she was 8. She moved since her London solo show in 2011, “Painting rituals” (book published at Shelter press) where she still used white canvas but used it as a base for her spontaneous poetic brush strokes.

Wars, 2011 Oil on Canvas 160 x 170cm

Wars, 2011
Oil on Canvas
160 x 170cm

 

 

 

Her new work is cold, plastic but retains this poetic touch and outlandish feeling conveyed through her gesture. In an exhibition in Paris “Et dans une explosion de joie”, you see her brushstrokes adventuring outside the limits of the canvas on the walls, obeying only her personal rules, focussing on the process.

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Better to go and see the exhibition for yourself on Chaussée de Wavre in Brussels, but hereunder a couple of pictures from the show, courtesy to Island gallery. She once again conceived the exhibition in situ creating a dialogue between the space and her work.

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Island 155 chaussée de Wavre – 1050 Brussels

Jill Mulleady website.

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Meticulous brush strokes of Marlene Dumas

It has been a long time since I last posted on this blog, mainly due to my intense other projects and being a young mother, but when I visited the Marlene Dumas’ exhibition at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam yesterday I thought, I really need to get back on blogging and post about this! I always admired the work of the South-African Amsterdam-based artist. This large exhibition, first time in the Netherlandssince 20 years, is a must. Moved by details of her paintings, I decided to show only a teaser here: the way she alternate thick paint and diluted paint to portray bodies, the meticulous way she conveys emotions through the eyes expression and the suggested brushes stroke showing feet and hands. The exhibition is on until January!

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Marlene Dumas: The image as burden

6 September 2014 until 4 January 2015, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam

 

Discoveries at FIAC 2013: Peggy Franck

After two years of pregnancy and maternity leave, I avoided large fairs such as Frieze and FIAC, but this year was time to go back. Although it is always unpleasant to walk around a fair, it is also exciting to be able to discover in such a densed surface new names and artworks. Today I would like to present works of the artist Peggy Franck, who is not mainly a painter but showed “paintings” at the Amsterdam based gallery Diana Stigter, which represents also another artist I cherish Aukje Koks  (and who has a show on 30 November for the Amsterdam Art Week-end).

 

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Peggy Franck – Unexpected things came thick and fast, 2013
Acrylic paint, spraypaint, gouache on paper, C-print

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Peggy Franck – Unexpected things came thick and fast (The continents), 2013
Gouache, ink, spraypaint, acrylic paint on paper, C-print

 

Peggy Franck (*1978) is a young Dutch artist working with different media photography, paintings, installations. Her work is based on her practice in the studio mixing daily object with material such as Plexiglas, mirror, tape etc, a process she started during her residency at the Rijksacademie where she studied back in 2005-2006. She knows how to skillfully mix reference for the viewers, is it a painting, a photograph, abstract, showing her studio, or not. From what I saw at the Diana Stigther stand at the FIAC, I particularly liked the way she worked on a print with different type of paint, blurring the limits between photography and painting. But a larger work, a painted photography of her studio shows the relevance of her practice showing a playful theatrical context intertwined with a puzzling narrative.

Read more abour Peggy Franck’s work in this article by Zoe Gray in Code 2.0, Numéro 6, Spring 2013

 To see more of her work, see artnews.

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Peggy Franck, Group exhibition at Diana Stigter It might as well rain until September, Part 2 (2013)

 

Yonghi Yim’s painted collage

With great surprise I discovered last week a micro-exhibition of Yonghi Yim which took place at Hectoliter gallery in Brussels from Thursday 30 May to Saturday 1 June. Working with wood and paper collage, she uses the rigidity of the first as a marker for the latter. ImageImageImageImageImageImage