artist statement

My personal world is dominant in my work, which is strongly autobiographical. The visual translation thereof always carries a great contextual content.

Sometimes this specific context is linked to universal themes, which gives the visualization an alienating character and blurs the immediate readability of the purely content-based context. By relating my personal context to more recognizable themes, I try to lower the threshold for an open experience and thus give access to my complex world.

For the visual transformation of my train of thought I mainly use existing formal elements and objects. They are used as metaphors which, through association, acquire an unambiguous content for me. The concepts are developed using various materials, deliberately chosen in function of their pure expressiveness and thematic connection.

Pure form has inspired me immensely since childhood. Simplicity, stillness, tension and dynamics inspire me endlessly when seeing and experiencing forms - all the more so because in their simplicity they are often allencompassing in relativity.

The collecting of existing objects, without any prior intention to what they will be used for, has always been an organic process. Using pre-existing elements challenges me to reach the maximum pictoriality within this formal boundary.

A recurring theme in my work is the search for connectedness and openness in transparency between me and my fellow human beings, but also between me and all objects, in what often is a “difficult” world to me. My imagery and inseparable context of content by no means have the intention to be pedantic. They would rather function as a noncommittal invitation to experience the work. As an artist, I do not think it is all that important that my work is unambiguously easy to understand. It would be much more interesting to share various deeper interpretations, despite the highly interpretable nature of my work.

Petrus Vanlessen