Paul Neagu, Anthropocosmos; PARTS Project, The Hague

I visited PARTS Project to write a review about the present show with works by Paul Neagu (1938-2004) for Villa La Repubblica. Click here to read the review (in Dutch).

As i have written quite extensively in VLR about the exhibition, i leave you here with some impressions without comments, except for the fact that you really shouldn’t miss this show.

© Villa Next Door 2019

Courtesy to the estate of Paul Neagu, all owners of the works and PARTS Project, Den Haag

Bertus Pieters

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Sebastian Gögel, Grote straat (Large Straight / Great Street); Hoorn & Reniers, The Hague

German painter Sebastian Gögel (1978) presently has a show at Hoorn & Reniers.

Undeniably Gögel is a painter in the German tradition (which is a much longer and richer tradition than most Dutch art viewers seem to realise).

Painting itself in Europe is an act in which tradition weighs heavily on one’s shoulders.

So if you really want to be a good painter you must take that for granted, whether you like it or not.

Gögel seems to be well aware of that; he survives it and builds his own work on top of it.

His work has very much matured since it was last seen in this city about a decade ago.

Some echoes of the Neuen Wilden of around 1980 are clear in this exhibition, also in his combining of the figurative and the abstract.

But there is a big difference as the sense of life has changed radically since the 1980s.

Today we live in a post-almost-everything culture in which Gögel has chosen to fly the banners of painting, not to be stubbornly traditional or to vehemently jump on the brakes of time, but clearly because it is (probably at least to him) the self-evident way of expression.

The German aspect is especially in the constant battle between content and composition, between imagination and expression.

There are some exceptionally fine portraits on show, but the exhibition on the whole has a lot more to offer, so it is warmly recommended as far as i’m concerned.

© Villa Next Door 2019

Contents of all photographs courtesy to Sebastian Gögel and Hoorn & Reniers, Den Haag

Bertus Pieters

Seven artists from Hong Kong, Under.Line; Quartair, The Hague

A line could be described as the tiniest visible row of particles.

These particles can be anything, they may even be words.

As such a line is both an abstract idea and an abstract visualisation of that idea.

Seven artists from Hong Kong (Tsang Chui Mei, Jamsen Law, Julvian Ho, Lee Suet Ying, Vee Leong, Li Tzimei and Tap Chan) have made a show at Quartair in which different philosophies about the line come together in one installation.

The works – some of which are being developed on the spot – can be seen individually, but the curator Jamsen Law and the other artists clearly stress the idea of one multidimensional installation with drawing, painting, light and sound.

It is an interesting show but a very short running one, tomorrow (Saturday) will be its last day.

The exhibition was first staged last year in Hong Kong, and will later this year be on show in Berlin.

© Villa Next Door 2019

Content of all photographs courtesy to the artists and Quartair, Den Haag

Bertus Pieters

Anachronisms; Galerie Helder, The Hague

Tan ja Smit

The present exhibition at Helder is curated by Ton Kraayeveld (1955), who combined works by himself with works by Tonio de Roover (1973), Tanja Smit (1961), Maarten Janssen (1960) and Jean-Pierre Zoetbrood (1950).

Tanja Smit
Tanja Smit
Tanja Smit
Tanja Smit

In spite of the title the works on show are all but anachronistic.

Tanja Smit
Tanja Smit
Tanja Smit
Ton Kraayeveld

It is difficult to find a common denominator for the show but the combination works very well and makes for an interesting exhibition with very different perspectives.

Ton Kraayeveld
Jean-Pierre Zoetbrood
Jean-Pierre Zoetbrood
Jean-Pierre Zoetbrood

All five artists have a kind of stubbornness in the way they make their work without showing off with that stubbornness.

Tonio de Roover
Tonio de Roover
Tonio de Roover
Maarten Janssen

They are all masters of their practices.

Ton Kraayeveld
Ton Kraayeveld
Maarten Janssen
Jean-Pierre Zoetbrood

Rather than anachronistic they seem to hover along time.

Jean-Pierre Zoetbrood
Tanja Smit
Tonio de Roover
Tonio de Roover

Even Kraayeveld’s paintings, which might be called the most historically retrospective in the exhibition, show modernism as a presence and not as a reflection in time.

Maarten Janssen

© Villa Next Door 2019

Contents of all photographs courtesy to all artists and to Galerie Helder, Den Haag

Bertus Pieters

Uit het atelier! (From the studio!); Galerie Ramakers, The Hague

Jérôme Touron

Presently Galerie Ramakers has a show of works by five artists – Jérôme Touron, Azul Andrea, Reinoud Oudshoorn, Max Fouchy and Frank Halmans – which connect the optical to the slightly absurd.

Azul Andrea
Jérôme Touron
Reinoud Oudshoorn

For example Oudshoorn’s K-17 is a sculpture that may remind you of a graphite drawing or a black and white photograph and plays a game with your sense of perspective.

Azul Andrea

Andrea’s many sided works as shown here might probably be best described as optical lyricism.

Azul Andrea
Azul Andrea
Max Fouchy

Fouchy’s optical adventures vary from quite simple jokes to far more intricate works.

Max Fouchy
Max Fouchy
Max Fouchy
Max Fouchy
Max Fouchy
Max Fouchy
Max Fouchy
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Azul Andrea
Max Fouchy
Frank Halmans
Jérôme Touron

Touron’s Botanique (Botanical) is one of the more monumental works in the show.

Jérôme Touron

Its simple concept contains a world of rich absurdity.

Jérôme Touron
Jérôme Touron
Frank Halmans

But undoubtedly the highlight of the show is Halmans’ Verlaten galerijflat (Abandoned Block of Flats).

Frank Halmans

It looks a bit like a big sum of the different aspects of Halmans’ works about which i wrote quite extensively in 2016 in Villa La Repubblica. Click here to read that article (in Dutch).

Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans
Frank Halmans

The works are still on show this week and over the weekend, so you have to hurry if you don’t want to miss this!

Frank Halmans

© Villa Next Door 2019

Contents of all photographs courtesy to the artists and to Galerie Ramakers, den Haag.

 

Bertus Pieters

Joran van Soest, The in between; Twelve twelve gallery, The Hague

The in-between is probably the biggest part of the World as we see it.

Even bodily contact only seems to underscore that fact.

However, seen as a spiritual space the in-between is a vast reservoir of emotion, thinking, feeling and the unknown between the self and the rest of the world; the in-between is in fact the immaterial Other.

As an artist you are able to materialise these aspects and as such make a vessel for these thoughts.

Joran van Soest (1994), who graduated last year from the arts academy in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, is quite literally working on a vessel at the moment: a zeppelin.

Of course since the Hindenburg disaster civil aviation with zeppelins has come to a dramatic standstill, but the idea of a big ship steadily ploughing the waves of the enormous aerial ocean that surrounds our planet appeals to the imagination, as it does to Van Soest’s.

Whether he will succeed in making an airworthy airship may be doubtful, but that is not really important.

The spin-off of the project, materialising things, physical experimenting in and with the Other will probably be its main result.

To give you a good taste of it you can see Van Soest’s present show at Twelve twelve gallery.

© Villa Next Door 2019

Content of all photographs courtesy to Joran van Soest and Twelve twelve gallery, Den Haag

Bertus Pieters

Robbie Cornelissen, Dirk Zoete & Rik Smits, This Must Be The Place; Galerie Maurits van de Laar, The Hague

Rik Smits

I visited Maurits van de Laar’s gallery a few days ago to write an article about a work by Rik Smits (1983) for Villa La Repubblica. Click here to read the article (in Dutch).

Rik Smits
Rik Smits

However, the present exhibition is much bigger than just that work.

Rik Smits
Rik Smits

This Must Be The Place shows works by Smits, Robbie Cornelissen (1954) and Dirk Zoete (1969), all three of them very good draughtsmen.

Rik Smits
Rik Smits

As the title implies, the works on show all have a strong sense of place, which results in a kind of inner landscapes, cityscapes and architectural interiors.

Rik Smits
Rik Smits
Rik Smits

Zoete is the only one who explicitly depicts human beings in his landscapes, which seem to be very simple, especially compared to Cornelissen’s and Smits’ works.

Dirk Zoete
Dirk Zoete

However, that simplicity is deceptive as the concepts of his works are extremely balanced, such that there is no place for hidden details, but plenty of room for interpretation.

Dirk Zoete
Dirk Zoete

His figures and animals are very lively and his compositions could be described as both melodic and rhythmic.

Dirk Zoete
Robbie Cornelissen

Cornelissen’s works, monumental as they sometimes may be, are probably best described as inner spaces.

Robbie Cornelissen
Robbie Cornelissen
Robbie Cornelissen

Knowledge and culture often play a referential role.

Robbie Cornelissen
Robbie Cornelissen

Even linear perspective itself retains its more or less intellectual aspect as if inherited from Renaissance artists.

Robbie Cornelissen
Rik Smits

Apart from two sculptures, Smits shows some impressive drawings, most of them cityscapes.

Rik Smits
Rik Smits

It might be enticing to some to refer to Smits’ empty cities and buildings as dystopias, but i think his architectural capriccios show buildings as individuals and cities as living organisms, which is a much wider scope than the trendy dystopia idea.

Rik Smits
Rik Smits
Rik Smits

Generally it is a very full and brilliant show.

Rik Smits
Rik Smits

Be sure to take your time when visiting as the works are full of detail.

Rik Smits

© Villa Next Door 2019

Contents of all photographs courtesy to the artists and Galerie Maurits van de Laar, Den Haag

Bertus Pieters