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© Image courtesy of Tim Van Laere Gallery

Tim Van Laere Gallery presents its sixth solo exhibition of Rinus Van de Velde, celebrating ten years of collaboration with the artist. In this exhibition, Van de Velde introduces a new medium within his oeuvre: oil pastel drawings. Alongside these drawings, Van de Velde will be presenting a large installation.

Rinus Van de Velde (b. 1983 in Leuven) is a total artist who constantly explores the tension between fiction and reality through the use of different media, such as drawing, sculpture, installation and film. His drawings form the foundation of his artistic practice, to which he always returns through his other works. Over the years, the artist has been looking for a way in which drawing can be made to function as a completely autonomous medium. With his large-scale charcoal drawings, Van de Velde developed a highly personal visual language that he used to depict alternative worlds that were always interwoven with his own living environment, the result being various fictional autobiographies in which he often exploits art history to generate new narratives. For more than ten years, Van de Velde searched for a color technique in drawing with the same expressive power and possibilities as charcoal. He found those qualities in oil pastel, a material that enables him to draw in the same powerful and fluid way as charcoal while offering a wider range of possibilities.

In his text ‘Painting and the Graphic Arts’, Walter Benjamin distinguishes between the vertical, representational character of a painting and the horizontal, symbolic character of a drawing. Horizontal drawing explores how meaning is formed in and through drawing – literally ‘a game with signs’. Drawing is seen as a symbolic system that generates meaning. The platform values the connection between drawing and thinking and the related directions: from concept to drawing or, conversely, the drawing of thoughts. This theory is also applicable to Van de Velde's work. In his drawings, he codifies the world through a collection of images and combines them into the narrative of his fictional autobiography. He also displays this fascination with the codification of the world in a large installation, which visitors can enter through a vault door. With this, Van de Velde visualizes his ultimate fantasy of structuring reality, a theme that runs throughout his work. The installation seems like a combination between a Swiss vault in which the most precious treasures are kept safe and an athenaeum where knowledge and images are collected and archived. This installation will also feature in one of Van de Velde’s forthcoming film projects.

The artist’s work is held in various international collections, including S.M.A.K. (Ghent), M HKA (Antwerp), Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium (Brussels), CAC (Malaga), Kunstmuseum Luzern (Lucerne), Frac des Pays de la Loire (Nantes), Museum Voorlinden (Wassenaar), Gemeentemuseum (The Hague), KWM Art Center (Shanghai) and Colleccion Solo (Madrid).



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Contemporary Art Belgium is a platform dedicated to provide a selection of current contemporary art exhibitions in Belgium. It was created to turn a spotlight on the large and very dynamic Belgian contemporary art scene as well as to connect people and start dialogues.

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