「I believe that identity is crossing of others and other people.」— Stijn Ank
02.Sep.2017—15.Oct.201 solo Exhibition
With an architectural background, artist Stijn Ank from Belgium was known for his openness and strong structural architect before he shifted his path to become an artist. We could see Ank’s sensibility to space and environment from both his works in 2012, ‘Folding’ in Aspelare and ‘Vision’, a design for public school in the north-west of Brussels, thus allows his work to generate an art-space conversation with a sense of spirituality.
It is not rare to cross from architect to fine art, for instance Tony Smith who extended Minimalism to sculpture and Modernism architect Frank Gehry who is known for his irregular lines. To Ank, it is the same reason to create art and architecture – it is not just an object, but a window that leads to interaction with people.
20.2017, plâtre de Paris and Pigment, 35.4x31.5x21.6 inches
Unlike other artists, Ank chose not to take full control of how his work will result. The key of shaping Ank’s works is artists’ instinct in that moment and patience in time. Using plaster, which he is familiar with as an architect, as the main medium, Ank pours the pigmented plaster that he picked by intuition earlier into molds layer by layer, giving the medium maximum autonomy and discretion, then waits until the work forms naturally. The uneven surfaces and the layered lines that were drawn by gravity, are all proofs of visualizing time and spirit.
12.2017, plâtre de Paris and Pigment, 23.6x15.7x1inches
13.2017, plâtre de Paris and Pigment, 23.6x15.7x1inches
16.2017, plâtre de Paris and Pigment, 23.6x15.7x1inches
Just like the contrast between ‘light’ and ‘dark’, ‘cold’ and ‘heat’, making the void visible through the solid is the core concept in Ank’s works, the process of ‘visualizing the void’ always touches people’s sensibility to space. Conquering and visualizing the void within space that was never noticed before brings out the relationship between the art piece and space – the stance that shapes space and spirit through time.
Unvoid (2015), video installation, 58'7", color Dimensions variable, edition of 1 + 1AP photo credit / Studio Stijn Ank