Walter Swennen in conversation with Damien De Lepeleire
A conversation between Walter Swennen and Damien De Lepeleire on the occasion of the exhibition “HIC HAEC HOC” at Xavier Hufkens (28 October—17 December 2016
A painting by Walter Swennen always comes as a surprise. It might contain an intriguing combination of words or an isolated letter of the alphabet, a fractured message or a semi-recognisable phrase. Perhaps it will be figurative, abstract, or something in-between. Then there are the textures: opaque or transparent, rough or smooth, glossy or matte. Not to mention the techniques: brush, palette knife, sgraffito and impasto, and endless fluctuations and combinations thereof, not to mention a wealth of less orthodox methods. Finally, and last but not least, there are the colours: vivid, evocative and always beautiful. Look carefully at a work by Walter Swennen and you will discern — either instantaneously or over time — some or all of these qualities. These material aspects of the work reveal the many and varied layers of its construction. In short, they disclose ‘how’ the painting was made.