Press Relaese

KOEN DELAERE & BAS VAN DEN HURK | March 12 - April 3, 2016
Opening reception: 6 - 8 pm, Saturday, March 12

HALSEY MCKAY is pleased to present two exhibitons by Dutch artists Koen Delaere and Bas van den Hurk. In the ground floor gallery the artists are paired for their first two-person show, despite having known and worked in close proximity for over a decade. Upstairs, they present an iteration of their joint curatorial project, Whatspace, which will feature Steven Cox, Cheryl Donegan, Aleana Egan, Wade Guyton, Rachel Koolen, and Wendy White,

Taking its title from a line of Kerouc’s Silly Goofball poems, Delaere and Van den Hurk relish in this type of poetry and contrast. Both artists use painting to address concerns of autonomy and heteronomy – how much can a work determine its own conditions and, how much must it refer to previous works and contexts. While neither constructs a painting in its most traditional sense, both masterfully play with, and pervert, standardized concerns of the grid, pattern, layering, surface and color to form inventive surfaces and nuanced compositions.

Bas van den Hurk’s new paintings are all made on silk with screened patterns fragmenting an image of Lizica Codreanu wearing the Pierrot-Éclair costume designed by Sonia Delaunay for Rene Le Somptier’s 1926 film, ‘Le P’tit Parigot’. These paintings transitively reveal the relationship between their intern qualities and the networks of production and distribution they are a part of. Sculpture, fashion and the performative aspects of his work aid in the creation an overall environment. The remains of his painting process are contained within plastic bottles, sharing an ambiguous middle ground of being both sculptural and fluid at the same time, of being objects on display and remnants of production.

Similarly performative, the scarred surfaces of Koen Delaere’s paintings mark time with paint itself, forcing a physical and geometric path on his highly textured canvases. The plane is constantly challenged by repeated layering of pigment, as new paint hides arrangements of color and shape, or is scraped off to reveal previous marks below. Delaere uses a method that portrays mirrored surfaces of multiple works, as one is physically pressed against another during their creation. These reflected apparitions disclose the changes over time in lively and rebellious explosions of form and alteration.

Koen Delaere was born in Bruges in 1970. He graduated at the Academy for Visual Education where he studied art and philosophy. He was a De pont Foundation grant awardee. Recent exhibitons have been with Van Horn Gallery, Dusseldorf (DE); De Vleeshal Middelburg, and Gebr. Lehmann Gallery, Dresden, (DE); Gerhard Hofland Gallery, Amsterdam, (NL); Centraal Museum Utrecht, (NL); Tatjana Pieters Gallery, Gand, (BE); MIS, Sao Paulo, (BR) among many others. In 2015 he was a resident at the CCA Andratx, Mallorca, (ES). He currently lives and works in Tilburg, (NL).

Bas van den Hurk studied Fine Art at Academy St. Joost in Breda and Philosophy of Aesthetics at the University of Amsterdam. His work has been show extensively worldwide at, Rod Barton, London, (UK); Ginerva Gambino, Cologne, (DE); Martin van Zomeren Gallery, Amsterdam, (NL); Paul Andriesse, Amsterdam (NL); Galeria Pancho Fiera, Lima, (PE); Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, (NL); Hopstreet Gallery, Brussels, (BE); Autocenter, Berlin, (DE). Cell Project Space, London, (UK). He currently lives and works in Tilburg, (NL).

Whatspace is a roaming independent platform for contemporary art and cultural debate founded in 2008 by Koen Delaere and Bas van den Hurk. Whatspace tries to find inherent inducements presented in ideas and works in order to create and give guidance to an engaged discourse that reaches further then the art world alone.

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