Helen Beard, The Desire Path

Helen Beard, The Desire Path

Reflex, Amsterdam

until 30 September 2020

Visually exciting — bright, dynamic and voyeuristic — the work of British artist Helen Beard wields colour, texture and abstraction as tools to take back ownership of sexual imagery from the predominantly male gaze. Beard’s work explores themes relating to gender, sexual psychology and eroticism, forever unapologetic in her depictions of female desire

Helen Beard
This is the Colour of My Dreams, 2020
Oil on canvas, 1000 mm x 1100 mm

Reflex Amsterdam announces the artist’s first solo exhibition at the gallery. While Beard’s artistic practice encompasses different mediums, including collage, sculpture, ceramics and needlepoint, The Desire Path focuses on her painting and features work in a diversity of sizes, ranging from small studies to large-scale canvasses. The artist’s small acrylic on board works function as preliminary studies for her oil on canvas paintings, in which she instinctively chooses the colours for her compositions.

Helen Beard
Pink Moon, 2020
Oil on canvas, 900 mm x 800 mm

Situated between abstraction and representation, her figures are reduced to concisely defined fields of vibrant colour. Working from found images, Beard’s eye for cinematic compositions featuring close-ups and interesting angles reveal her past experience as an assistant art director in the film industry.

Helen Beard
Tulip, 2020
Oil on canvas, 800 mm x 620 mm

Perhaps the most striking aspect of Beard’s oil paintings are the brushstrokes left visible in the otherwise dense surfaces of paint. Transitioning to oil from acrylic paint in 2008, Beard started to experiment with the texture of her paintings, creating an entirely different feeling on the surface of the canvas. As Beard explains in an interview in 2018: “[the brushstrokes] are almost like the touch on skin, like fingerprints”. Against the vigour and excitement of the artist’s choice of subject matter and palette, these strokes return a touch of tenderness to the abstract scenes, creating a fascinating tension that celebrates humankind’s instinctual fascination with sex, as well as its life-affirming nature.

Helen Beard
Sweet Kisses, 2020
Oil on canvas, 1200 mm x 1200 mm

Helen Beard (1971) studied at Bournemouth and Poole college of Art and Design, graduating in 1992. The artist participated in Simulation Skin: Selected works from the Murderme Collection (2017) and True Colours (2018) at Newport Street Gallery, London. Her most recent exhibitions include the group show 21st Century Women (2018) curated by Jane Neal and Fru Tholstrup and the solo exhibition It’s Her Factory (2019) at Unit London. The artist’s work can be found in major collections worldwide. Beard lives and works in Brighton, UK.

The Desire Path is Beard’s first exhibition outside of the UK and marks the start of Beard’s representation at Reflex Amsterdam for the Benelux. On occasion of the exhibition, the gallery is publishing Beard’s first monograph including an essay by Matt Carey-Williams.

Charles Avery. The Taile of the One-Armed Snake

Charles Avery. The Taile of the One-Armed Snake

GRIMM Frans Halsstraat, Amsterdam

Until 25 April 2020

Due to the Covid-19 emergency the exhibition might be closed to the public until further notice. We invite you to CLICK HERE and check the website of the organizers to find the latest information and updates about the current situation.

The Taile of the One-Armed Snake, a new solo exhibition by Charles Avery at GRIMM in Amsterdam.

Since 2005, Charles Avery’s work has focused on a fictional island: an all-encompassing investigation of the fabric and mentality of another place. Through drawings, texts and objects the artist describes the inhabitants, architecture, philosophies, customs and idiosyncrasies of this imaginary territory.

With accents of the Scottish Hebrides and East London, the Island is located at the centre of an archipelago of innumerable constituents. The gateway to the Island is the port of Onomatopoeia, once the stepping off point of the pioneers who first arrived, turned colonial outpost, turned boom town, bustling metropolis, depression ravaged slum, and regenerated city of culture and ultimately tourist destination. It has many stories, played out within the limits of a monumental city wall that separates the dark and violent wilderness beyond.

The title of the show, The Taile of the One-Armed Snake, takes its name from a bill pasted on the wall, under the porticos, where a market takes place by day. The poster is surmounted upon layers of other notices, stuck up, torn down, peeled off : signs to and remnants of the Islanders’ cultural activity.

Several large and medium scale drawings provide a textural insight into life in, on, around and beyond the city wall: from the bustling society of the market to a lonely oarsman bringing wood by boat to fire the twin lighthouses forming the sea-facing gate of Onomatopoeia. Cultivators tend to their crops outside a Utopian fort, a satellite of the cityproper. The attractive red-headed student with the weak chin muses in a cafe. Saltimbanques practice beneath the arches, whilst beasts devour scraps left over from the market.

These scenes of Island life are offset by isometric projections and plans of the City wall and the fort, giving us a god’s eye view of the constructions and the rigorous mathematics that underpins many of their systems.

The centrepiece of the show is a large glass installation of multiple parts: a section of a fish market, with all manner of re-purposed container used to display various species. Immediately familiar, under closer inspection the creatures can be seen to embody various geometries: the hexagon, the tetrahedron, the pentagon. Predominantly on offer on the stalls are the ‘ninth’, the sacred mainstay of the Islanders’ diet and economy: dog-faced eels of all different colours and girths. Described by Avery as ‘muscly lines with faces’ they represent the simplest form, primitive beings of pure, directional will.

The Taile of the One-Armed Snake is a multitude of stories, ideas, and percepts interwoven to create the rich fabric of the Island.

All images > Installation view, Courtesy the Artist and the gallery

Luis Xertu, Renditions of impermanence at Torch Gallery, Amsterdam

Luis Xertu, Renditions of impermanence at Torch Gallery, Amsterdam

Torch Gallery, Amsterdam

until 25 April 2020

by Doron Beuns

Life is inherently ephemeral and fragile. Mother Nature could take life at the same rate of creation, even in the most prosperous and medically advanced societies. The recent COVID-19 pandemic has proven that possibility beyond the stretch of our collective imagination. Until the public health crisis, most of us were not at all used to dealing with mercilessness of Mother Nature, at least not on a daily basis. Being constantly confronted with the finitude of life could therefore easily unsettle us. However, one thing that could actually help us deal with this unsettlement is a work of art. At its best it could help us to come to terms with mercilessness of Mother Nature and find consolation in its sublime beauty. Luis Xertu’s first solo presentation at Torch Gallery in Amsterdam could not have been scheduled at a more interesting time in that respect. 

Luis Xertu at Torch Gallery Amsterdam, curated by Valentijn van der Hulst

The paintings of Luis Xertu depict shadowy figures in gloomy natural scenes made from real plants that are directly glued onto dark canvases. Some of these plants appear to be freshly picked and relatively vital whereas other plants are as faint as the figures in the painting. A sense of vitality has been lost or will be lost over time in a Luis Xertu painting. Everything seems to be caught in the midst of fading away into oblivion. That which really disintegrates within the painting and that which disintegrates in our imagination become one. 

Luis Xertu at Torch Gallery Amsterdam, curated by Valentijn van der Hulst
Luis Xertu, God’s First Creature, 2016  
Luis Xertu, The Voyeur, 2019

Luis Xertu consistently blurs distinctions between pictorial and material elements in his paintings. This mostly applies to how or where the plants are applied onto the canvas. When we pay attention to how the plants are applied we may notice that the plants remain flat on their own but suddenly return to three dimensions when they partake in a composition. If we then on the other hand pay attention to where the plants are applied (and where they are not applied), we may notice that the smooth dark space could function as a background in one part of a painting but could suggest a tree -branch, water-source or figure in another. 

Luis Xertu, Young Kronos, 2020
Luis Xertu, The Three Fates, 2019 

Positive and negative are constantly at odds with each other in Xertu’s paintings. Not just visually but also conceptually; we on the one hand observe the dismal ephemerality that comes with the passing of time but on the other hand observe subjects that leisure away. They are enjoying nature rather than being concerned with its laws. This is where a possible concern about human finitude makes place for the beauty of obsolescence in Xertu’s paintings. They rightfully acknowledge that human experience has always existed on the exact borderline of these two domains. It is up to us where we place the emphasis, especially today.

Luis Xertu, The Number Two, 2020

Mariken Wessels ‘NUDE – Arising from the Ground’

Mariken Wessels ‘NUDE – Arising from the Ground’



Unprecedented times call for creative solutions. After having to postpone the opening of the exhibition “Nude – Arising From The Ground” by Mariken Wessels, RAVESTIJN GALLERY invites you to take a virtual tour through the exhibition on their website.

Comprising of sculpture, photography and film, and inspired by a series of Eadweard Muybridge collotypes, Wessels’ most recent work explores the motion of obese bodies and the animalistic aspects of the human form. Nude – Arising From The Ground was partly premiered at Art Rotterdam 2019, but this exhibition aims to give time and space for the entire work to be seen. In autumn 2020, the project will be part of a group show entitled Human After All: Ceramic Reflections in Contemporary Art at Museum Princessehof in Leeuwarden. Other participating artists are Geng Xue, William Cobbing, Klara Kristalova, Kris Lemsalu, Leiko Ikemura, Liliana Porter, Sharon Overmeieren, Nathalie Djurberg & Hans Berg. Curated by Tanya Rumpff.

Nude Upside Down and Back Again I, 2018
Nude Upside Down and Back Again II, 2018
Nude , Water and Green Leaves II, 2018
Nude , Water and Green Leaves III, 2018
Nude Upside Down and Back Again VII, 2018
Nude Upside Down and Back Again VIII, 2018
Nude , Water and Green Leaves IV, 2018
Model-Stop-Motion I, 2018

Amsterdam-based artist Mariken Wessels (NL, 1963) creates artist’s books, sculptures, installations, photo series and film works. Her multilayered projects offer poignant picture stories,combining appropriated (vernacular) imagery and self-produced images, usually featuring female protagonists struggling with life.

NAZIF TOPÇUOĞLU at Flatland FVS / Amsterdam

NAZIF TOPÇUOĞLU at Flatland FVS / Amsterdam

UNTIL 15 MAR 2020

The underlying thread in Topçuoglu’s work is a constant preoccupation with time, memory and loss. The Turkish artist worries about the transience of people and things in general, and tries to reconstruct unclear and imperfect images of an idealized past. Such an attempt inevitably requires theability to recapture past, hence his constantart-historical references to classic paintings and photographs as well as to authors suchas Proust and Thomas Mann.

Nazif Topçuoglu, Gossip (2007) C-print 124 x 124 cm, 53 x 53 cm

Another aspect in his work is his preoccupation with the contradicting positions of women in Turkey. When employing the representations of youth as imagery, one has to deal with the issues of gender roles and male gaze. In these photographs, a respectful stance towards the female has been taken. The subjectification of the female youth as a gender-free ideal, inevitably involves her intelligence, beauty, energy, and struggle.

Nazif Topçuoglu, Lamentations (2007) C-print 114 x 172 cm, 60 x 90 cm

Nazif Topçuoglu has completed two Masters degrees, in Photography (the Institute of Design, Chicago ) and in Architecture (MEU, Ankara). Exhibited widely and held teaching positions at various universities in Turkey. He writes regularly on the history and criticism of photography, and has published three books on the subject. Occasionally does advertising and editorial work.

Nazif Topçuoglu, Waiting (2007) C-print 70 x 50 cm, 125 x 90 cm

Francis Alÿs Children’s Games

Francis Alÿs Children’s Games

19 December 2019 / 8 March 2020

EYE Film Museum Institute, Amsterdam

Children’s Games a major exhibition of work by the Belgian-Mexican artist Francis Alÿs. Alÿs is primarily known for his playful videos that are both engaged and poetic. These imaginative and rich observations of daily life are set in sometimes politically charged moments and places. A big spatial installation at Eye provides the setting for his impressive series Children’s Games.

Born in Belgium in 1959, Francis Alÿs trained as an architect in his home country and in Venice. In 1986 he moved to Mexico City, where he started to focus on visual art. On his many walks through the city, he started to study and record everyday life in and around the Mexican capital by means of simple yet striking performative actions. His work involves making subtle interventions in daily life, and then capturing the effect with the help of video, photography, drawings and paintings. For example, Alÿs pulled a toy dog made of magnetic iron through the city, gathering all sorts of metal from the streets in the process, and he walked with a leaking tin of green paint along the Green Line, which in 1948 marked the border between Israel and Jordan. He also pushed a block of ice for nine hours through Mexico City until it had melted. Later in his career, Alÿs travelled as an ‘embedded war artist’ to Afghanistan, and since 2016 he has spent extended periods in Iraq, where he accompanies a Kurdish battalion and stays in refugee camps. Alÿs won the Eye Art & Film Prize (2018) for his work.

Children’s Games 

A remarkable chapter in the now extensive body of work of Francis Alÿs is his impressive series on children’s games played all over the world. This collection of short videos has been steadily growing since 1999. The most recent addition to the series is number 18, featuring children playing knucklebones in Nepal (Children’s Games 18 / Knucklebones, Kathmandu, Nepal, March 2017). In other videos, children kick a bottle up a steep street in Mexico City, play roughly with crickets in Venezuela, fly kites in Afghanistan, and ricochet stones on the sea near Tangier in Morocco. Alÿs films in cities and villages, but also in places dominated by conflict and tension – such as Afghanistan or a Yazidi refugee camp in Iraq. Alÿs captures everything with a humane eye and mild amazement. The games often echo the rituals, symbols, customs and insights of each particular society he looks at through his lens.

The artist follows the children patiently, moving with their movements, but he never gets involved in their games. Surrounding noises are audible: birds, crickets, the wind, the laugher and screams of children. We see the harsh conditions in which the children sometimes live. We are drawn into an extended moment in their lives. Despite the sometimes wretched conditions of war and poverty, the overarching mood among the children is bright and cheerful, even optimistic.

All images > courtesy EYE Film Museum Institute, Amsterdam

Inanimate human life at Rijksakademie OPEN

Inanimate human life at Rijksakademie OPEN

By Doron Beuns

The forty-six international residents of the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam recently opened their studios to the public during the 2019 edition of the Rijksakademie OPEN. Some of these studios seemed like the artist could walk in any minute whilst others showcased carefully curated presentations. Like other years, there was a high variety in interests, techniques and artistic attitudes. However, despite of that variety one could always find overarching tendencies that resonate within the contemporary art world at large. One of such tendencies involves artists blurring the distinctions between human subjects and inanimate machines. For this review we will have look at artist within the Rijksakademie that share this tendency.

Rijksakademie, Rijksakademie OPEN, 2019
Rijksakademie, Rijksakademie OPEN, 2019

We live in an era where an increasing part of our behaviors and desires are mediated by (inanimate) digital entities. This contemporary condition was pushed to an extreme in the installation of Özgür Kar. His studio space centered a large flatscreen monitor opposed by a curved tower of speakers. The flatscreen displayed a black and white animation of a naked male figure that seemed to be stuck within the screen. A similar sense of discomfort derived from the opposing speaker boxes as one could hear monologues that addressed uncertainty, tragedy, desire and everyday nonsense. Each monologue derived from a different speaker box as if these monologues tapped into the multiple parts of the animation’s personality. Kar’s chosen medium and arrangement automatically bring to mind the construction of multiple online identities along with the hysteria and echo effect of the current social media landscape. On the other hand we find that the content of his work addresses the isolation of being itself, a timeless subject which in turn exists outside the online spectrum.

Ozgur Kar, Rijksakademie OPEN, 2019

Another artist that was concerned with the interior of the human subject was Mire Lee. However, instead of monologues we found mechanical guts and the artificial equivalent of bodily fluids. Her abject slime fountain reflected the compulsion to absorb and exert bodily fluids in a state of arousal or existential threat. One could identify an incarnation of “paraphilia characterized by the desire to consume or be consumed by the other” . Lee’s work was located on the precise tipping point of voyeuristic pleasure and abjection. Satisfying slime could easily become personal discomfort and vice versa. We are initially drawn in by the meditative quality of the work. But then suddenly, one becomes aware of the discomforting fact that our interiors are as fluid and formless as Mire Lee’s installation.

Mire Lee, Rijksakademie OPEN, 2019

Recognition and disassociation also played a significant role in the performative practice of Mette Sterre. Whilst covering herself in wrinkled cloth, the artist mimicked the movements of a similarly clothed robotic entity. At arrival, it was hard to say who precisely mimicked who. Sterre seemed to have carefully studied robotic movements over the course of developing her co actors. This reveals that our symbiosis with inanimate machines works in both directions. The French philosopher Jean Baudrilliard once mentioned that objects (including machines) will come to dominate human subjects and divest them of their human qualities and capacities. Mette Sterre’s studio gave a contemporary glimpse into that gloomy prospect. The future is closer by than ever before at the Rijksakademie OPEN.

Mette Sterre, Rijksakademie OPEN, 2019 PHOTO G.J. van Rooij 
Mette Sterre, Rijksakademie OPEN, 2019 PHOTO Tomek Dersu Aaron

All images are at the courtesy of Rijksakademie and the owners.

Terry Rodgers Sweet illusion at Torch Gallery in Amsterdam

Terry Rodgers Sweet illusion at Torch Gallery in Amsterdam

By Doron Beuns 

Our experience of other people is essentially indirect. We rely on the sensual qualities of other people in order to get a grasp of their inner life. However, a substantial remainder of that inner life does not rise to a perceivable surface. Some things we keep to ourselves and other things could not even be put into words. Due to this limitation we are, at least in part, oblivious to the interior experiences of our fellow beings. This phenomenon seems to be at the chore of Terry Rodger’s latest show at Torch Gallery in Amsterdam.

Terry Rodgers, 2018, The Good Thing, courtesy Torch Gallery

‘Sweet Illusion’ showcases twenty two paintings that depict glamorously lean figures with scantily dressed bodies in luxurious environments. However, instead of figures at ease we find figures that are caught up in their own rumination. This rumination subsequently disables each figure to meaningfully engage with its environment. The figures in a Terry Rodgers painting are therefore infinitely trapped in their own shallowness and depth. Naked bodies become impenetrable membranes, draped fabrics become reflections of human listlessness, and half-empty glasses become signifiers of incompletion.

Terry Rodgers, 2019, Inside Out, courtesy Torch Gallery
Terry Rodgers, 2019, True Lies, courtesy Torch Gallery

The scenes look alluring at first but become increasingly problematic at closer inspection. Subtle nuances in brushwork, facial expression and composition subtly hint at the isolation of the multiple subjects. Rodgers is capable of exploring a dark aspect of human life without retreating to a subversive or murky visual language. His paintings rather depict a place where the rich environment and the lack of his subjects are at constant odds with each other. The paintings are on the one hand dreamlike but also strongly rooted in reality.

Terry Rodgers, 2018, Facial Recognition courtesy Torch Gallery
Terry Rodgers, 2018, Moonlight, courtesy Torch Gallery

A place where a bunch of neglected people look past each other seems a lot like planet earth at the moment. The difference is that in the real world disconnection is not an absolute condition. But it is precisely this absolute condition that gives a Terry Rodgers painting its haunting beauty. Solitude is a sublime thing. 

Terry Rodgers, 2018, Focal Point, courtesy Torch Gallery

*Sweet illusion by Terry Rodgers will be on view till the 28th of December at Torch Gallery in Amsterdam.

Doron Beuns

Jake and Dinos Chapman ‘The rainbow of human kindness’ at H.e.r.o. Gallery Amsterdam

Jake and Dinos Chapman ‘The rainbow of human kindness’ at H.e.r.o. Gallery Amsterdam

by Doron Beuns

Jake and Dinos Chapman
The Rainbow of Human Kindness, Solo exhibition at H.E.R.O. Amsterdam
18 May – 29 June 2019

Are we stuck in a vicious cycle of affirming our liberal advantages by tolerating the suffering of others? According to Jake and Dinos Chapman solo exhibition at Amsterdam’s Hero Gallery we definitely are. The title of the exhibition, ‘the endless rainbow of human kindness’ seems to be a sarcastic critique of prescribed universal optimism. The artists present a world in which kindness and solidarity conceal an immeasurable capacity for malevolence. This firstly confront us with the darkness beneath our own public personas but even more so with our uncanny ability to be entertained by the suffering of others if it is located outside the boundaries of our personal affairs.

Jake and Dinos Chapman, Unhappy Feet, 2010, Glass-fibre, plastic and mixed media, 216 x 171 x 171 cm

Jake and Dinos Chapman do seem more than happy to provide their audience with entertainment value. Their ‘Hellscapes’, of which several versions are on display in this exhibition, are so detailed and carefully constructed that it would be hard for someone to contemplate the violence without astonishment. This is precisely where the artists throw our moral framework off balance and question the necessity for a moral imperative within an artwork. The ‘Hellscapes’ prove that artworks can have a sublime dimension that enables us to experience something beyond a binary judgment of good and evil.

Jake and Dinos Chapman, The New Arrival, 2014-2016, Mixed media, Variable dimensions

Jake and Dinos Chapman, Minderwertigkinder – Wolf Child, 2011 Mannequin, wig, and trainers 131 x 39 x 32 cm

Jake and Dinos Chapman, Minderwertigkinder – Small Duck Child, 2011,Mannequin, wig, and trainers
116 x 41 x 32 cm

We are off course aware that the bloodshed in the work ‘Unhappy feet’ is fictional and that the actors are interchangeable but that doesn’t mean that the artists cease to put their finger on the sore spot of human history. In addition they demonstrate how images of violence are always carefully packaged to conceal something else. For example, works such as ‘I had to punish myself’, ‘The new arrival’, and ‘Someone offered me money to do it’ appear as precarious torture machines but are in fact well-crafted and monumentally sized bronze sculptures. These works also appear older than they are due to their stained finish, vintage colour-scheme and knick-knack choice of objects. The illusion of things looking older furthermore applies to the visual quality of the two-dimensional works in this exhibition. In ‘Living with nearly dead art’ and “The larger rainbow of human kindness’ we see the works of Jake and Dinos co-exist with older artworks as if they were from the same time-period. A clever mixture of drawing and printing techniques makes that the illusion could be perceived as a plausible historical artefact.

Jake and Dinos Chapman, World Peace Through World Domination I-IV, 2013 Banners 494 x 196 cm (each)

Jake and Dinos Chapman, Someone offered me money to do it, 2008, Painted bronze, 165 x 360 x 91 cm

Jake and Dinos Chapman, I wanted to punish myself, 2008 Painted bronze 227 x 103 x 68 cm

The works of the Chapman brothers exist in undefined place between the past and a dystopic future. This also applies to the work ‘Minterwertigkinder’,a group of child mannequins dressed in sportswear gazing at a painting. The title of this work clearly relates to the superiority/inferiority complexes of the Second World War whilst the facial modifications of the mannequins are more reminiscent of a future totalitarian regime in which a generation of inferior children emerged from failed bio-engineering experiments. It furthermore seems fitting that these children would be obliged to wear normcore sportswear and swastika badges. In that way they become the diametric opposite of the cultured human individual. This is by default the category that most exhibition visitors would like to place their selves in. This in turn brings about an opposition between the spectator and the artwork that confronts us with our tendency to fear, reject or exoticize a perceived impurity. We are more susceptible to that tendency than we would like to admit, especially today. Jake and Dinos Chapman are not afraid to point that out.

Doron Beuns



By Doron Beuns

Levi van Veluw’s latest solo presentation ‘Beyond Matter’ at Galerie Ron Mandos displays a mesmerizing interplay between sacred geometry and organic interference. This principle slowly unfolds through a series of blue assemblages mounted on the crisp white walls of the gallery. The first work encountered showcases a wooden grid flooded by formless heaps of clay that are slightly marbled. It appears as a snapshot in an active thought process in which the two brain halves congregate. Van Veluw’s thoughts seem to physically manifest, whilst speaking to our own processes of deciphering that manifestation.

The display of the artist’s process seems to be a primary concern as the next few assemblages on the wall address the manual labour that went into that work. Up close a multiplicity of finger prints are revealed, pressing the blue clay into multiple geometric arrangements. From afar, we see harmonious compositions with a slight edge of whimsicality. The works contain a delicate balance between order and chaos as the artist’s neurotic tendency to perfect things is countered by the slight imperfections that occur during manual clay modelling.

‘Beyond matter’ clearly shows the artist’s ability to challenge his previous works. The previous work of the artist shows a strong inclination to impose order on the natural world. This new work clearly inverses that inclination. Van Veluw allows uncontrollable materials and human error to interfere with his imposed order. The consistent repetition of this exercise throughout the show testifies to a profound ability to let things go. This adds an additional dimension to the artist’s work that we haven’t seen before to this degree.

This sentiment of letting things go also ties in with some of the religious connotations we find in van Veluw’s wall pieces. During a studio visit, the artist mentioned how he is fascinated by the way in which humans turn immaterial and spiritual experiences into material substances. One work contains a clay grid stuffed with box-like inserts, strongly reminding me of the little notes that are stuck between the remainders of the Jewish temple wall in Jerusalem. Equally, the altar-screen silhouettes in some other wall pieces could be found in one Christian Churches down the road. Furthermore, the geometry throughout the work draws connections to patterns in a nearby Mosque. The colour blue, which is omnipresence throughout the presentation, ties the works together as the blue sky that covers all the above religious institutions.

The coloration of van Veluw’s work also invites contexts beyond the three big religions. This becomes apparent when one of the wall pieces appears to be a passage to a smaller installation space within the gallery. Walking through it, we enter an industrial cube of steel and glass. Behind it, we again observe a set of blue grids flooded by marbled matter. But this time it looks like the alchemical aftermath of a volcanic eruption that preserved an array of ancient artefacts, that have now been approved for a public viewing.

Even when repeated, no pattern looks the same within van Veluwe’s latest show. Every little mark and tweak are to be enjoyed in their own right, perhaps encouraging us to let ourselves go a little whilst doing so. Nevertheless, I am very curious about how these current wall pieces might translate into more floor-based sculptural works. This is another area in which the artist has previously produced a lot of  works with a high degree of geometric perfection. Only time will tell whether the artist will allow for imperfection in that area as well.

Doron Beuns





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