October 25 – November 23 | 2018
Opening Reception | Thursday, October 25 | 6-8pm
Opening remarks by Frank Golden
IN REGARD OF THE DISREGARDED
A Dutch Perspective on Remainder, Scrap and Traces
Els Mikx | Ank Lauvenberg | Willem van Goor
In Regard of the Disregarded brings together the work of three Dutch artists Els Mikx, Ank Lauvenberg, and Willem van Goor – long-time residents in the West of Ireland, where the relatively isolated communities and environments in which they live have informed their collective work over the last twenty years.
The sculptural work on show by Ank Lauvenberg and Els Mikx will comprise pieces of re-used and re-purposed materials; wrought iron discards, carved wood remnants, utilitarian objects, toy parts; as well as carved, welded, and standing sculptures from materials original to the space and area in which they live. Their work is pervaded by quixotic reflections and a guiding humour.
The paintings of Willem van Goor both intimate and large scale reference the stark and daunting reality of life hewn from the forbidding landscape of Achill. There is a fascination in the built spaces that provide protection against the elements and in the phenomenological encoding of that lived reality. House structures are enveloping and stand as testament to individual and societal endurance. The register of belief, personal autonomy and independence are also referenced in the elliptical compression of text into the structure of some of the works.
Materiality, context, habitation, how to go deeper into the space you choose to inhabit is central to all three artists. Where they come from, where they have chosen to relocate to, and the impact of that relocation can be profoundly read in the nature of what they produce, both in terms of their artwork and the engagingly managed garden environments they have created.
This is an exciting exhibition, one which is grounded in early modernism but which also contains aspects of an introspective materialism, found art, and land art interventions. It touches base with the Dutch artisanal tradition and in so doing creates a tension between that tradition and contemporary intentionality, all the while reflecting the Irish culture they have chosen to abide in.
About the Artists:
At a young age I found “things”. Things like wheels, bolts, nuts made from copper, iron or wood. I took things apart like clocks and bikes, to see how they worked and put them together again…mostly I had a few leftovers….and started to collect them. In our house we had a cupboard, we called it the “verrassingenkast” (surprise cupboard). There I kept my bits and pieces, you never knew when you might need them for “something”.
Another fixation was building houses, or when they were demolished, then I rescued materials out of skips and re-used them. So I started to work with cement and old bricks in our garden. At Art School I wanted to do sculpture, but Holland had no stone.
In Ireland I discovered more than stone.
Education and Professional Memberships:
AKI (Academie voor kunst en industrie) Enschede NL
Member of the former ABK (Amsterdams Beeldhouwers Kollektief)
Open Stal, Oldeberkoop
As a child of around ten years of age I started sculpting, mostly in wood. In the Netherlands you don’t easily find natural stone as you do here in the Burren. I got a lot from this early experience, mostly little injuries. So when I was an adult I studied art at an Art College (Academie voor Kunst en Industrie Enschede, the Netherlands – AKI for short).
The most important concepts that I learned were; Looking, Seeing, Start Doing and Keep Going. And not techniques, if you want to make something, you will find the techniques to make it.
I work with all kinds of materials; wood, stone, iron – everything that invites me to use it.
Education and Professional Membership:
AKI (Academie voor Kunst en Industrie)Enschede NL
Member of the former ABK (amsterdams Beeldhouwers Kollektief)
Bijbels Museum, Amsterdam
De Boog, Westernieland
Collaborative Exhibitions – Els Mikx/Ank Lauvenberg
Galerie Maja Wildevuur, Hoogeveen
Hof 88, Almelo
Galerie Witteveen, Amsterdam
Friese kunstopleiding, Leeuwarden
Commission: Tree of Live, Clonascra, Ireland
Willem van Goor
I was born in 1948, in Zwolle, The Netherlands.
As a child, I looked for hours on end for things happening in the natural world in my mother’s garden: …a caterpillar munching away another leaf; …ants hunting to feed their colony; ….little pink apple blossom blown down by the wind and colouring the lawn; ….the process of snowflakes melting away, until…: “Look, it’s getting white!” It was this fascination of metamorphoses,the process of changes, that resulted in a 5 years study at the Academy of Art (Academie Minerva) in Groningen, The Netherlands.
I graduated from the Academy in 1978 where I studied subjects such as Lyric Abstract Painting, Graphic Arts, Objects -steel, wood, ceramics.
In 1997, I emigrated to Ireland (Achill Island) with my family.
Here I could combine creating a garden (Achill Secret Garden) with my artwork. My main interest at the moment is: ‘Processes on the edge, and Natural Phenomenons’ or ‘the grandeur of things that easily are ignored and not seen.’
Two roads meet at the crossroads, of course!
The road to happiness and the road to perdition; do they meet at the crossroad for the dancing stone? The music, the dancing, the meetings, the exhilaration, the excitement…
Even in our locality we still can identify these places where people met and danced and laughed and loved.
Maybe you have a story from those times that you’ve heard? From a grandmother, a neighbour, or a friend?
Or maybe you could create such a story yourself, reimagined from the scraps and the lore that you’ve gathered from various sources.
We would like to invite you to write this story! Your ‘crossroads’ story could be about more than dancing at crossroads for, as we all know so well, there are many different kinds of ‘crossroads’ experiences to be met in a lifetime. So, if yours is a story about a different kind of crossroads, well, we’ll be more than happy to read, appreciate and consider it for the prize.
The art piece, ‘Dancing at the Crossroads’, on display here in the exhibition, will be the prize for the best story.
Please return your story to the Confessions Box in the Project Room in the Gallery before November 23, or you may email it to Lisa Newman at email@example.com and she will print it and place it in the Box.
Thank you and we look forward to reading your story!