Dutch Delight – Artworks covering 1971 -2017
Amstel Gallery is proud to announce: “Dutch Delight” – Dutch artists covering artworks created from 1971 till 2017 at Palm Beach Modern + Contemporary from January 12 – 15 2017.
Amstel gallery is an international gallery with its roots in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. For the inaugural Palm Beach Modern + Contemporary 2017 fair the gallery is bringing acclaimed Dutch artists like Karel Appel, Erwin Olaf, Casper Faassen, Ruud van Empel and Hendrik Kerstens.
The Netherlands is a small country but is has brought the art world some of the most influential artists from Europe. Amstel Gallery is showing a complete Artist box by painter Karel Appel (1921 -2006) The original wooden box contains a wooden sculpture, 7 silkscreens a signed and numbered book. Karel Appel was honored in Washington DC with an overview exhibition at the Phillips Collection.
Another remarkable artist from the Netherlands that shows at Palm Beach Modern + Contemporary with the gallery is Hendrik Kerstens (1956). Since 1995, Dutch photographer Hendrik Kerstens has been photographing his daughter, Paula. His photographs have been collected by art patrons around the world and have inspired taste-makers as diverse as Elton John and Alexander McQueen. (McQueen, in fact based his Fall 2009 collection on Kerstens' image of Paula with a plastic bag as a head-dress, using the image as his invitation for the show.)
Initially Kerstens' photographs were created out of the artist's desire to capture something of the fleeting moments that fade of childhood. The pictures recorded everyday events – his daughter's sunburn, the child's bath. However, one day there was a moment of revelation when Kerstens not only saw her in relation to the events of her own life, but also projected on her his interest in the Dutch painters of the seventeenth century. As Kerstens recalls, "One day Paula came back from horseback riding. She took off her cap and I was struck by the image of her hair held together by a hair-net. It reminded me of the portraits by the Dutch masters and I portrayed her in that fashion. After that I started to do more portraits in which I refer to the paintings of that era. The thing that fascinates me in particular is the way a seventeenth-century painting is seen as a surface which can be read as a description of everyday life as opposed to the paintings of the Italian renaissance, which usually tell a story. Northern European painting relies much more on craftsmanship and the perfect rendition of the subject. The use of light is instrumental in this."
A number of portraits of Paula are clearly reminiscent of Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer. The austerity of the photograph, its clarity, the serene expression on the young girl's face, and not least, the characteristic "Dutch" light, all combine to create this impression. In other photo’s no pretense is made to imitate 17th century clothing but Paula's face and Kerstens' light turn a thoroughly modern hoodie or a handback cover into a classic and timeless garment.
Conceptually, Kerstens' photographs play with the dialog between the mediums of painting and photography, with seriality, and time. On a more emotional level, they address everyday reality while expressing the love for his child, and the knowledge and development of his skills.
In the tradition of the Dutch Masters is a young and rising star who recently joined the roster of artists showing at Amstel Gallery; Casper Faassen (1975) is a painter and photographer who lives and works in Leiden, The Netherlands. Portraits, landscapes still life’s and flowers are translated in his unique figurative language. Vanitas is the central theme of his work; the silent, eternal and iconic beauty is set against a background of apparent decay. This decay is visible in the handling of materials and not necessarily the subject of the art work. His photographs are built up like paintings with different imaginary and physical layers, giving the viewer a feeling of distance and at the same time a voyeuristic presence. Works by Casper Faassen are included in many private and public collections like the Royal Library in The Hague and Museum the Lakenhal in Leiden.