Ruud van Empel – ‘Because of Vincent – Van Gogh’s native region as inspiration’, Museum Stedelijk Breda
January 5, 2022
Ruud van Empel‘s work is part of the new exhibition at the Museum Stedelijk Breda ‘Because of Vincent’ alongside work by Erik Andriesse, Nel Aerts, Jonah Falke, Anne Geene, Arpais du Bois, Matijs van de Kerkhof, Marc Mulders, among others. From the 18th of December 2021 till the 1st of May 2022
How do you, as an artist, relate to an icon like Van Gogh and to images that are so well-known? What is the benefit of working for weeks on Van Gogh’s native soil? These questions are central to Because of Vincent – Van Gogh’s homeland as inspiration . The reason for the exhibition is the tenth anniversary of the artist-in-residence program of the Van GoghHuis in Zundert. The guest studio is located next to the Protestant church where Vincent’s father preached, while the old sexton’s house serves as residence for the artists.
The spirit of Van Gogh can be seen in 85 works of art. The exhibition is organised thematically. Within the themes of life and work, the use of color, love for nature and fascination for birth and death are discussed. This is how Carmen Schabracq identifies with his person. She clearly paints her own face, but equally unmistakable is the reference to the self-portrait that Van Gogh painted just after he cut off his ear. The attributes in the painting, the bright colours and impressionistic painterly touch evoke that masterpiece. The artist duo Heringa/Van Kalsbeek involves the Zundert parade community in their work. They take the decay that sets in when the flower parade is over as their point of departure. Together with a large group of parade builders, they make impressive sculptures. There is also work by artists who exhibited in the Van GoghHuis, such as the Viennese painter Arnulf Rainer. Rainer has been making expressive, dark drawings based on Van Gogh’s self-portraits since the 1970s.