Août Gallery is delighted to present its second group show: “Between Visions”. The exhibit, debuting on the 22nd of October, will display the works of five emerging artists: Arjen, Afa Annfa, Einar Lúðvík Ólafsson, Marius Seidlitz and Qin Tan.
The featured works offer a thematic, stylistic and iconographic array, yet they are mutually centered on an inquisitive requestioning of the human condition. The artists set sail on their personal anthropological mission, wandering between the realms of the physical and the psycho-social human body.
Through their oeuvres, they get to delve into their deepest selves and exteriorize their visceral [visions] in the form of fantasy. The results collectively pertain to the abstraction of the human form, a deliberate and evocative feature. Rooted in the artists’ contemplative processes, the aim of this mode of representation is to induce shifts in the mind of the observer.
The group exhibition follows Août’s purpose of featuring international contemporary artists in the heart of Gemmayzeh, and aims to offer viewers a gentle distraction and a soft pause from the harsh reality.
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 were 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.
Qin Tan (born in Beijing, China) graduated with a BFA in General Fine Arts from Maryland Institute College of Art in 2015.
Tan’s work is often introspective, exploring internal dialogues and methods of expression that are observant of what it means to be human in the present day. The subjects of her paintings range from surreal landscapes to symbolic stick man figures that occasionally morph into different objects and tools. They reflect and capture life in its most pure and primordial form—blue skies, green grass and a conscious observer that is looking for answers and meaning.
The artist is currently based in New Jersey, USA.
« This body of work is an introspective exploration of internal dialogues and
methods of expression that reflect on what it means to be human in the present
day. » – (Qin Tan)
November 19, 2021
November 19, 2021