Arjen is both an artist and a violinist. He completed his Masters in violin studies in the Conservatory of Utrecht.
As a child, Arjen explored his passion for painting through self-teaching, namely by studying the techniques of a plethora of artists. His biggest influences where Picasso, Dali, Condo, but also famous Dutch artists of the 17th century, such as Rembrandt and Jacob Van Ruysdael. Through the fabrication of “style copies”, Arjen worked his way through art history, spanning “impressionism, cubism, fauvism, surrealism”, and even ethnographic art. But it is only when he went back to his personal sketches that he was able to develop his own style.
Arjen’s style revolves around the experimentation of minimalism in different hues:
first, in the purity of the composition, where his figures are placed centrally, with bright colors (oil pigments) that illuminate them, in a virgin flamboyant gradient background.
Second, in the abstraction of the human body that constitute the figures themselves, deconstructing it completely, and reducing it to a few recognizable features. The results are subjects that are “totally irrational and surreal”, enhanced by a play of light and color.
Lastly, the sharpness of the produced images, resembling 3D renders, with their voluptuous shapes shaded so perfectly that they almost seem to be exiting the canvas.
It is precisely in this layered abstraction that the artist explores the human condition and the fundamental notion of esthetics.
The concocted characters arise most of the time by “improvisation”. Arjen almost surrenders himself completely to his subconscious mind, letting his imagination roam free and create these fantastic figures.
Similarly, the goal of the artist is to induce shifts in the mind of the observer, in creating one image that can evoke multiple things at once.
Currently, Arjen is based in the Netherlands.