Art in corona times 10. Harold de Bree, Borderlines; HOK Gallery, The Hague

Tiny HOK-gallery has reopened with new work by Harold de Bree (1966).

De Bree took his copper plates, or rather printed circuit boards used in computers, to the border of the two Koreas, on the South Korean side.

He prepared them with paint and went to see what he could do with them in a heavily militarised border zone like the Korean where he also visited many old battlefields from the Korean War (1950-1953).

In the end they became a kind of dialogue between the landscape and the prepared plates themselves.

It wasn’t possible to take photographs of the landscape, while just making compositions with found objects from the military zone was too superficial.

So De Bree used found objects to scratch the landscape – the hills but also the dams that were built on both sides of the border – into the copper plates.

As such he made a series of works that are open to a wide range of interpretations.

They defy the ban on publicly showing certain details of the border area.

On the other hand the surface of the works are blurred and only the graphic lines of the hilltops and the dams impose themselves as abstract lines.

To make the experience complete, you are allowed to be alone for ten minutes with the works in the gallery on Saturdays or you may see them by appointment.

Any way you choose, they are good works to see in real as they change by any change of light, becoming copperplates of both defiance and acquiescence.

© Villa Next Door 2020

Contents of all photographs courtesy to Harold de Bree and to HOK Gallery, Den Haag.

Bertus Pieters


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