Peter Depelchin (°1985, Ostend, lives and works in Brussels). His monumental drawings are the core of his artistic practice. The initial sketches are always put to use either as a stable point of departure for later artwork, or as autonomous artworks in their own right, notwithstanding his interest and experience with a variety of media.
Peter develops an idiosyncratic visual language by translating historical stories and myths to vibrant visionary and contemporary compositions. This staging is a culmination of months of research. He starts from literary, mythological and historical sources that he interweaves with his own insights and struggled feelings about the present day. References to iconographic imagery from art history and oriental cultural and decorative elements, form the background for his slowly executed large scale artworks, thereby giving evidence of a rich knowledge of our universal visual culture.
Preliminary studies are a crucial part of the quest for appropriating his characters: In his work, mythological, historical figures and archetypical images evolve into original actors in a theatrical spectacle. A unique way of visual sampling is his basic method. Besides, Peter employs more and more live models to portray his scenario and to gain new insights.
The spectator is invited to wander around in his authentic world. He/she is confronted with everything that connects people to each other. Human feelings, love, fear and joy dialogue with our collective cross-cultural consciousness or subconscious.
During the solo exhibition, the exceptional qualities of Peter Depelchin as a draftsman are shown. At the same time Peter’s extensive experience with a variety of media is demonstrated. The drawing is the core of his artistic practice. The materials he uses for the development of his large-scale allegorical drawings are pen, Chinese ink, bistre and paper.
The lines are accurate. The linear elements make their way over the surface and create an explosive inner tension that underlines the harmony of the work.
The monumental work ‘Hortus Conclusus’ 170 cm x 320 cm, 2014, forms the central piece of the exhibition. It took him one and a half year to complete the drawing and thanks to this artwork, Peter was awarded second laureate of ‘De Grote Prijs Ernest Albert’, Mechelen.
The three works ‘Mordre’, ‘The Exposure’, ‘The Frenchman’ and the sculptural works are shown for the first time at the exhibition.
Peter has been very active on the international art scene, with residencies in The Netherlands (Stichting IK, Vlissingen, 2008-2009), in Italy (Academia Belgica, Rome, 2014-2015) and in the United States (Residency Unlimited, New York, 2016), exhibitions in Rome (Fondazione MAXXI), Brussels (het Kasteel van Gaasbeek) and London (Young Masters). In early spring of this year he had a solo-intervention at Offspace gallery (NYC, US) and participated in the group show ‘Afterimage’ at inCube arts space in New York. Recently Peter was selected as laureate for the prestigious biennial Belgian art prize ‘Grote Prijs Ernest Albert’ that had its focus on contemporary drawing (Mechelen, Belgium). He participated in the group show ‘Outside In’ in SOHO (NYC, US) and was invited to have a solo show at ‘Brilliant Champions Gallery’ (NYC, US) in April 2017. Peter collaborates closely with Light Cube Art Gallery (Ronse, Belgium) and with the Italian gallery Banana-split (Rome, Italy). The director of this last gallery, Sara Falanga and the New York-based freelance curator Rebecca Pristoop will curate a solo show in 2017 with four years of Peter’s artistic practice on view.