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delicacies

There is a new edition of Petervan’s Delicacies. Number 124. An irregular, unpredictable, incoherent, unfocused set of mind-sparks that got me thinking.

As an appetizer, the last one on this edition is about Nakatomi Space, the tower that McClane explores in Die Hard via elevator shafts and air ducts, crashing through windows from the outside-in and shooting open the locks of rooftop doorways.

This is about “A ghostlike military fantasy world of boundless fluidity, in which the space of the city becomes as navigable as an ocean.” The physical walking-through-walls is a strong metaphor for radical innovation

Check-out issue #124 here. And if you like it, subscribe to future (unplanned, unguaranteed, unfocused) edition here.

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This is a supplement to my post about the end-of-year assignment Art and Culture at the Academy of Visual Arts in Ghent.

Dutch version here.

Dear Fiorella,

Your lessons were always fun for me. You speak in poetic and philosophical words and sentences. I have written them all down and someday I will publish an anthology of them. Chris and Inge advised me to use them as inspirations for my paintwork.

Here are a few examples of sentences and statements that flow from your mouth:

THE CHESSBOARD IS EMOTIONLESS

A GOOD ARTWORK DOES NOT GIVE ANSWERS

THE INTENSITY OF SLOWNESS

BEING BROKEN IS A STATE OF BEING

WORKING WITH CLAY DOESN’T MAKE NOISE

WE CAN ONLY SEE EMPTYNESS WHEN WE FILL IT

THERE SHE LIES IN ALL HER GREATNESS

LYING IN DEATH

360 POSSIBLE VIEWS

IN RELATIONSHIP WITH THE ENVIRONMENT

AND KEEPING TRACK OF THEM IN OUR HEAD

“THE PARCOURS”

CREATION OF THE POSSIBILITIES

TO LET THE IMAGE EMERGE

BLOCKING OF THE VISUAL BRAIN

WHEN IS SOMETHING BECOMING TIRING?

WHEN YOU CANNOT DETERMINE YOUR OWN TEMPO

YOU CAN TAKE A SMALL STEP

TAKING A HUGE SPACE AT THE SAME TIME

THE BRAIN IS LIKE AN OFFICE

A HOUSE WITH ROOMS

SOMETIMES YOU NEED OTHER KEYS

With gratefulness,

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Dit is een aanvulling op mijn post over de eindejaarsopdracht Kunst en Cultuur aan de Academie voor Beeldende Kunsten in Gent.

Dutch version. English translation here.

Fiorella,

Je lessen waren voor mij altijd genieten. Je spreekt in poëtische en filosofische woorden en zinnen. Ik heb ze allemaal opgeschreven en ooit publiceer ik een bloemlezing van ze. Chris en Inge hebben me aangeraden om ze te gebruiken als inspiraties voor mijn schilderwerk.

Hier zijn een paar voorbeelden van zinnen en statements die zo uit je mond vloeien:

HET SCHAAKBORD IS EMOTIELOOS

EEN GOED KUNSTWERK GEEFT GEEN ANTWOORD

DE INTENSITEIT VAN DE TRAAGHEID

BREUK IS EEN STAAT VAN ZIJN

MET KLEI BEZIG ZIJN MAAKT GEEN LAWAAI

WE KUNNEN EEN LEEGTE PAS ZIEN ALS WE ZE VULLEN

DAT LIGT DAAR IN ZIJN GROOTSHEID

DOOD TE LIGGEN

360 MOGELIJKE STANDPUNTEN

IN RELATIE MET DE OMGEVING

EN DIE IN ONS HOOFD HOUDEN

“HET PARCOURS”

CREATIE VAN DE MOGELIJKHEDEN

OM HET BEELD TE LATEN ONTSTAAN

BLOKKEREN VAN HET VISUELE BREIN

WANNEER WORDT HET VERMOEIEND?

ALS JE JE EIGEN TEMPO NIET MEER KAN BEPALEN

JE KAN EEN KLEINE STAP ZETTEN

EN DAARDOOR EEN ENORME RUIMTE INNEMEN

DE HERSENEN ZIJN ALS EEN BUREAU

EEN HUIS MET KAMERS

SOMS HEB JE ANDERE SLEUTELS NODIG

In dankbaarheid,

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Dutch version here.

Last year I had the pleasure of attending the Art and Culture classes at the Academy of Visual Arts in Ghent. The teacher is Fiorella Stinders, who conveys her enthusiasm for art to us in a very poetic way.

At the end of the academic year, we were given an assignment: applying what we had learned about looking at art. We were allowed to choose two works from an imposed list by Fiorella, and a third work that we had chosen ourselves, but that we had seen in real life (not in a catalog or photo).

I am happy to share my contribution in this post. First in Dutch, and then as a separate post in English (a translation by Google Translate, with only minor edits).

A separate blog post follows with a number of the poetic statements of Fiorella that have stayed with me. My coaches at the academy (Chris, Inge, Koen, Annick, many thanks btw!) have suggested that I use these quotes as inspiration for the next academic year.

Two selected works from the Fiorella list

Four Fairies – Michael Borremans

Borremans

A painting – oil on canvas – in a fairly large format (110x150cm). Striking is the large diagonal table oil stain in which the figures seem to be sinking. The void left at the bottom was intentionally left open by the artist. The brown-grey background works as a support surface.

We look from the top down. The colors of the figures are rather neutral, in the sense of not being dominant. There is a surreal peace from the work. The painter uses Claire-obscure effects, especially the shadows against the wall in the background. The mirroring of the hands on the black surface is subtly suggested. It is also the reflection that evokes the black oil effect. The vertical drop of paint has been deliberately retained and accentuates the verticality of a table or of a bath in a stone or concrete base.

There is a depth in the work; the composition is more central horizontally, but vertical light above the center. A diagonal from bottom left to top right.

The work has a certain lightness in color but a certain darkness in the subject. The brush strokes are fast, rhythmic. Shadows and light spots are suggested in a “simple” way: look at the light spot on the black pull of the woman at the very back.

The work is clearly figurative, but not photo-realistic. Depth and light are indicated. When I zoom in on the photo in deep close-up, the self-confident brush strokes of the artist become clear: the light reflections in the hairstyles, the patterns on the green dress, the light-darkness of the left. An inspiration for my own evolution towards the next year painting at the academy.

In some figures I sometimes recognize the silhouette of the artist’s skull, wondering if he has tried to suggest a self-portrait of four schizophrenic transgender identities. The figures are busy with something – something with their hands – but it is not exactly clear what they are doing.

From the work alone I cannot determine whether the artist wants to communicate a message. For me, it evokes themes of devotion, dignity, humility, and also ignoring a dark reality peeking around the corner. It seems like a report or a snapshot of a surreal dream.

The role of the spectator is passively looking; there is no participation as in a performance for example. The viewer views the work from the front. There is no 3D aspect as with a spatial work.

Ali’s Boat – by Saik Kwaish – video animation

Artist website: http://sadik.nl/

Video animation of +/- 6:30 minutes. Used material: charcoal and pencil (I think) on paper. Further information searched on the artist’s website. http://sadik.nl/ali-boat

The video is part of a larger set of videos, sketches, drawings, etc. Inspiring in itself on how the theme of the boat/letter is worked out and internalized in almost infinite variations and can give rise to a total exhibition: nothing has to be thrown away!

The perception of the video is, of course, different from that of a 2D image, as this also includes the aspect of time and storytelling. Rhythm becomes important. Music is supportive and determines the atmosphere.

The atmosphere of the video is rather dark, sad, and melancholic. The “light” of the video is grey. A lot of things move and flow at the same time: the face, the background, the boat that transforms into a bird and back. The tears and the rain. With the eye as a permanent anchor in the composition.

The meaning of this video animation has to do with fleeing and immigrating. The paradox of escaping the misery, while at the same time detaching the identity of your youth and the oddity of the new destiny. The universal desire for happiness, peace and security. The desire and awareness of travel – such as being on the road – for a better future. The image as an expression of this desire where words fall short.

The artist invites us to judge rather than condemn the alien “problem” from a more empathic point of view.

The artist makes a clear link to his own identity and immigration past.

The spectator is invited to participate and reflect emotionally.

Self-selected work

delvoye

Wim Delvoye – As seen in the Royal Museum for Fine Arts in Brussels on 11 April 2019.

Title: Dunlop Geomax 100/90)19 57M 720° 2X – Made in 2013

Based on the catalog, this work is apparently made from polished and patinated stainless steel, made from 3D prints. And then painted and chromed. When viewing the work in real life I did not know this, and I really thought that the artist had somehow twisted together existing wheels with rubber tires. The intended illusion was already successful.

I have viewed the work as part of the larger Delvoye exhibition, giving the work more context. I was enchanted and fascinated by the twisted crucifixes and truck cathedrals. On another side of the room, there were large truck tires carved out like lattice. The lighting of the whole was precise: the dark backgrounds and bases, and the laser-sharp lighting of the subjects themselves.

As in a claire-obscure painting, the artist plays with contrasting dark (matte) and light (shiny) chrome surfaces and shows he is a master in the intertwining of torsion and movement. This work – and the retrospective exhibition as a whole – provided a broader view of the work and the identity of the artist. Suddenly the provocateur of the tattooed pigs and the cloaca turns into an accomplished craftsman, artist, messenger, and questioner.

I suspect the artist is trying to make us doubt between real and unreal. It is probably not the intention of the artist, but he allows me to make the link with our online world where it is becoming increasingly difficult to distinguish real from unreal (example: fake news), or to sustain the illusion of control of personal freedom and choice in a world that is increasingly driven by artificial intelligence and algorithms. The human “androrhythms” – evoked by the artist – are a relief because they move away from the binary “if-then” computer logic.

This speculative and virtual connection with the world can be perfectly linked to a physical relationship and connection: a relationship bent and twisted time and space.

The spectator is invited to step around the work and to investigate and explore the interweaving of spokes and tires from both close and remote.

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delicacies

I decided to change the format of Delicacies somewhat. Instead of the weekly deluge, I see an irregular, unpredictable, incoherent, unfocused set of mind-sparks that got me thinking. I gather them as I go, and once every month (maybe every two, three months), I condense the harvest in maximum 5-10 Delicacies. Also a bit back to the joy of discovery and awe, away from the pressure to pump out a too bulky newsletter every week. Hope you find the same joy in reading as I did in discovering.

And instead of cut-and-pasting from the Revue Newsletter, I just include a link to it. Interested readers can subscribe directly to the Revue Newsletter.

Check out today’s edition: https://www.getrevue.co/profile/petervan/issues/petervan-s-delicacies-issue-123-177005

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delicacies

Petervan’s Delicacies are back! After a couple of months of relative rest, I have started again my weekly curation of content that resonated at a higher quality level. In this come-back edition, also some older posts of the last couple of months that for some reason stayed alive in my memory.

This is edition-118 of Delicacies on my blog post. As usual, max 5 articles that I found interesting and worth re-reading. Handpicked, no robots. Minimalism in curation. Enjoy!

If you can’t get enough of these and want more than 5 articles, I have created an extended version of Petervan’s Delicacies in REVUE. If you want more than 5 links, you can subscribe here: https://www.getrevue.co/profile/petervan

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De oogst V1

Petervan Artwork © 2018 - "Oogst/Harvest"
Acryl on canvas - 100x120cm

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