STATEMENT | PERSONAL JOURNEY
As a cross media artist i find comfort and discomfort in the relentless ongoing mystique journey through 'my own mind'. Searching and creating a néw kind of imagery, developing and evolving as i go along... the path of painting and sculpting is a philosophical one.
The huge multilayered, multimedia works that i bring to the surface must resonate on their own. Mixing all kinds of techniques as if they were languages are key element in my experimental process. The overall large works reach up to 16 feet and larger in size. Setting up dialogue, tension between figuration and abstaction, the works are acts of accumalating fluids and immediate assembled fictional gestures within a narrative trajectory/perspective.
I believe in action and response. In being aware of the past, the historical context i mean, but emphatically of this moment my paintings emerge nów... Not really high tech or very digital, however much in context of intellectual rigour reflecting the moment.
Fascinated by a wild relationship to mixed media, in one piece 'verything' is working for me... Adding vibrant comlex meaning, plus bringing an energetic feelin' onto the canvas is therefor an awe-inspiring freedom... The exploration of conciousness in both treatment and scale my stuff signifies itself as poëtical and enigmatic, oozing from zeitgeist, but nevertheless leaving you behind in a 'wild blue yonder'.
The way i am working is an exchange process to open up minds, mine and others. An approach to see into new entirety, with physical, emotional and associative signification/connotation. Trying to find a certain coexistence and a subversive juxtaposition of the painterly and the sculptural. Collaging materials and surfaces, combining technological outputs with the handmade, i seek to create an alternative visual platform so to speak... Playfully joining the most taditional of media with striking elements of contemporaneity. Exploring diverse approaches to painting over the past twenty years, my techniques include scrubbing, scratching, smearing and mashing. I work a variety of medium in my own way of experimenting such as cut-and-paste, collage, composed/combined printing techniques, drawing, painting, photography [second hand imagery and self-filmed], sculpture and installation. Often using source materials, xerox transfers, foundfootage and scrap re-used stuff.
There is a thrill in it all, in this aesthetic instinctively way of doin'. Sampling powerful disparate elements, creating a visual language defining a new space. A contrivance outpouring of the nervous system, primary raw on the other hand playful. I view painting and sculpting as a wandering off, somehow the medium spreads itself across material and thought. Finding myself in a vacuum away from time in a fleeding process is the most delightful thing about it all...
In life and in many works i team up with my partner photographer/interdisciplinary artist Sandra de Groot [CHAOS]. We frequently work alongside each other, dualing in content and context, which is a ravishing to do...
[Oscar Venema] i was born in Smallingerland in 1971 and based in Groningen - The Netherlands - working from my own studio/atelier at art bastion Het Werk. My works have been shown, curated and exhibited widely by many galleries, musea including Gemeente Museum Den Haag, Saatchi, Hüsstege, Walls, Street LAB, Pictura, Noorderlicht Photo Festival, Forma Aktua, Weisser Elephant, Parallax, Blend, Y2 Art Space and many others. Purchased by a wide range of corporate and public art collections such as The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Akzo-Nobel, Kpmg, Svb Bank, Umcg, Duo, Nationale Nederlanden, Inogem, Paradox, Gasunie, Dutch Ambassy Moscow, Pentascope, Bossinade, Amnesty International, Gas Terra and multiple private collectors.
In 2004 i was nominated for the Royal Award for Modern Painting - exhibit my works at the Royal Palace Amsterdam amongst the ten best finalists/artists.
In the same year i graduated at the renowned Academy of Fine Arts Minerva with my photographic novel called Trödel, a book about the triangular relationship between the former East-German cities Halle, Leipzig and Dresden.
Although i studied at the University of Applied Sciences i consider myself a true autonomous self- educated artist. Now working in the fields of mixed media and self-taught techniques i always am in the need for exploring and experimenting, learning various printing skills and whatever i can use really... A visual cross media artist working with photography, sculpture, printing and installation.
Currently i also teach/lecture at the Academy for Fine Arts Minerva, giving off-course mixed media workshops to my students. To transfer knowledge about the arts is now a passion to me.
Much of my/our works have explored moments and materials where the encounter between people, urban atmosphere and nówadays nature/landscapes evoke a profound sense of loss. Experimenting narrative and abstract tendencies in relationship to its possibillities.
My latest bodies of work named the 'APEX' series [still working on] examins the legacy of photographic landscape/nature research conducted with my own language of imagery, i construct and re-image a set of different narrative photographic elements combining the painterly with abstract gestures. Working principally with all kinds of techniques and tools, i devoted myself to depicting land-, mountainscapes that are all, in the end, something other than what they appear. My compositions recall photographs in their so-called fidelity to nature and their positive and negative materiality, ending up having more depth and intensity in what you see, but surely in context over content. In so donig i achive a strange conceptual/ambigious contemporary distance from the original source. The sublime and the near-surreal percolate through my elusive rendered 'APEX' paintings...