Cover image of the review
Andrée van Schaik, *The Glance*, 2019, oil on canvas, 50.5 x 40.5 cm. Courtesy of the artist and Neon Parc.

Andrée van Schaik: Paintings

17 Aug 2019
7 Aug - 31 Aug 2019

The complexity and variation of time and improvisation are obsessions that dominate Andrée van Schaik's artistic practice, which ranges from music, poetry to visual arts. Van Schaik's solo show at Neon Parc City exhibits experiments with both photographic images and oil painting. Without an obvious theme, the show suggests the spontaneity of production in each artwork.

Fully embracing a personal lens, the artist selects and assembles her primary visual sources from magazines and books, turning the photographic collages into oil paintings. Partial human figures, designed patterns of textile, architecture, etc., are juxtaposed within the picture frames in a vivid and balanced palette. Just as van Schaik converts musical notes into jazz, she also improvises with converting mundane photographic sources into semi-abstract oil paintings. Pieces of photographs are employed as if letters and musical notes, serving as building blocks for her free expression.

Does improvisation allow a heroic and free expression? Psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan suggested that the internal ambivalence of human consciousness is in fundamental contradiction with our external steadiness. According to this theory, people are by their very nature incapable of fully expressing themselves. Nevertheless, improvisation allows a space for freeing the self as it is a form that pursues not just speaking the conscious but also the unconscious. The existential truth that human souls are always covered by could then be partially eased by the improvisational gesture.

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