ABOUT THE EXHIBITION

This year would mark the fifteenth time that Galerie Ron Mandos participates at Art Brussels, one of Europe’s oldest and most established art fairs. The 38th edition of Art Brussels, which was to be held in April 2020 at the emblematic Tour & Taxis site in Brussels, was unfortunately postponed until April 2021 due to the coronavirus. Galerie Ron Mandos decided to bring its fair presentation to the gallery and is proud to present Changez! Art Brussels in Amsterdam. By organizing this presentation, the gallery provides encouragement to Art Brussels and promotes seven artists who were otherwise unable to show their work.

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Galerie Ron Mandos has had a special connection with Art Brussels since the very beginning of its existence. Early in 2000, Ron Mandos started working with Hans Op de Beeck, then a young Belgian artist who did not yet have gallery representation. In 2001, he won the Prijs Jonge Belgische Schilderkunst (Belgian Art Prize) and finished his residency at the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam. The promising young Belgian artist and Ron Mandos soon set a name in the Belgian art scene.

Ron Mandos: “I’m very happy to know so many people in Belgium. It was a logical step to operate in Brussels. There I’ve always been welcomed with open arms. The inspiring, late director, Karen Renders, and her successors Anne Vierstraete and Nele Verhaeren induced me to come back each and every year.”

Meanwhile, the gallery built a large network of Belgian collectors, made many new friends, and organized interesting projects in Brussels. There were solo presentations by Renato Nicolodi, Levi van Veluw and Jacco Oliver. Ever since its first participation at Art Brussels in 2006, Galerie Ron Mandos presented Belgian artists together with Dutch artists. As the gallery grew, international artists like Daniel Arsham, Anthony Goicolea, Isaac Julien, Ryan McGinness, Mohau Modisakeng, Muntean/Rosenblum, and Troika joined the fair booth in Brussels.

Proud of this history and committed to taking part in this year’s edition of Art Brussels, Galerie Ron Mandos transformed its gallery into a vibrant fair setting. In conjunction with the presentation in Amsterdam, there will be several online presentations, revealing to you the newest works by by Renato Nicolodi, Hans Op de Beeck, Muntean/Rosenblum, Ryan McGinness, Anthony Goicolea, Levi van Veluw, and Jacco Olivier.

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ABOUT Levi van Veluw

Levi van Veluw was born in 1985, in Hoevelaken, The Netherlands
He lives and works near Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Since graduating in 2007, Levi van Veluw has produced multi-disciplinary works that includes photographs, videos, sculptures, installations and drawings. This varied body of work has been showcased in many different locations across Europe and the United States, earning him a number of nominations and awards.

The artist first became known in 2008 with his solo exhibition Landscapes at Galerie Ron Mandos in Amsterdam. This coincided with him being awarded the International Photo Award in New York for the photo series “Ballpoints”, and the selection of one of his video works for the Whitstable Biennale UK.

In 2010, the work of the artist was showcased in a series of major museum exhibitions, including the exhibition “Dead or Alive” at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, the Museum of Modern Art in Arnhem and Ars Electronica in Linz.

2013 saw the publication of the book “Origin of the Beginning”. This singular book is a work of art in itself, published in an edition of 1000 hand-signed copies. The book, which is widespread among collectors and enthusiasts, provides an overview of the artist’s work from 2006 to 2013, a rich oeuvre that includes photographs, drawings, installations, sculptures and videos.

The work of Levi Veluw has been exhibited internationally in leading museums and institutions, and is included in both public and private collections, such as the Borusan Collection, Istanbul; Museum Voorlinden, Wassenaar; Museum MORE, Gorssel; the KPMG Art Collection, Amstelveen; the Ekard Collection, Wassenaar; the Lakeside Collection, Rotterdam, and Cobra to Contemporary/The Brown Family Collection. In addition to his work in his individual practice, Levi van Veluw has also worked on commissions for private clients. In this way, he has collaborated, in 2012, with curator Marc Coetzee on the film “Family” in the frame of the “Films4peace” project. In 2014, van Veluw created for Hermès a life-sized site-specific installation for one of their main windows in Shanghai. Van Veluw’s works have also been widely shown at international art fairs such as, among others, The Armory Show New York, Art Brussels, Volta Basel, Unseen Amsterdam and the Barcelona Loop Fair Barcelona.

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ABOUT Hans Op de Beeck

Hans Op de Beeck was born in 1969 in Turnhout, BE
He lives and works in Brussels, BE

Visual artist Hans Op de Beeck lives and works in Brussels, where he has developed his career through international exhibitions over the past twenty years. His work consists of sculptures, installations, video work, photography, animated films, drawings, paintings and writing (short stories). It is his quest for the most effective way of presenting the concrete contents of each work that determines the medium that the artist ultimately selects. The scale can vary from the size of a small watercolour to a large, three-dimensional installation of 600m2.

The artist not only uses a very wide variety of media, but also deliberately employs a diversity of aesthetic forms, ranging from an economical, minimalist visual language to overloaded, exaggerated designs, always with the aim of articulating the content of the work as precisely as possible.

Thematically, the work concentrates on our laborious and problematic relationship with time, space and each other. Op de Beeck shows the viewer non-existent, but identifiable places, moments and characters that appear to have been taken from contemporary everyday life, aiming thereby to capture in his images the tragicomic absurdity of our postmodern existence. Key themes are the disappearance of distances, the disembodiment of the individual and the abstraction of time that have resulted from globalisation and the changes to our living environment that developments in media, automation and technology have brought about.

Hans Op de Beeck sometimes calls his works “proposals”; they are irrefutably fictional, constructed and staged, leaving it up to the viewer whether to take the work seriously, as a sort of parallel reality, or immediately to put it into perspective, as no more than a visual construct. His work is nourished by a keen interest in social and cultural reflection. The artist also questions the difficult relationship between reality and representation, between what we see and what we want to believe, between what is and what we create for ourselves in order to make it easier to deal with our own insignificance and lack of identity. The visual output of that investigation often produces slumbering, insidious, melancholy and astonishing images.

Multi-disciplinary artist Hans Op de Beeck creates interworlds. Suspended between past and future, fiction and reality, his works sound out a mirage-like contemporary universe and a sensory vertigo where the familiar rubs shoulders with the strange. From installation to sculpture, from video to animated film, from short stories to painting and drawing, from photography to sound material, the media he employs seem to converge on the definition of a topos: a mental theatre that projects the viewer into a reflexive social and cultural experience, the intimate thinking of the human condition. —Eva Prouteau

Op de Beeck has shown his work extensively in solo and group exhibitions around the world. He has had substantial institutional solo shows at the GEM Museum of Contemporary Art of The Hague, The Hague, NL (2004); MUHKA Museum of Contemporary Art, Antwerp, BE (2006); Centraal Museum, Utrecht, NL (2007); the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington DC, US (2010); Kunstmuseum Thun, CH (2010); Centro de Arte Caja de Burgos, Burgos, ES (2010); Butler Gallery, Kilkenny, IRL (2012); Kunstverein Hannover, D (2012); Tampa Museum of Art, Tampa, USA (2013); the Harn Museum of Art, Gainesville, FL, USA (2013); FRAC Paca, Marseille, F (2013); MIT List Visual Arts Center, Cambridge, Boston MA, US (2014); MOCA Cleveland, OH, US (2014); Sammlung Goetz, Munich, D (2014); Screen Space, Melbourne, AU (2015); Espace 104, Paris, FR (2016); Art Unlimited, Basel, CH (2016); Kunstraum Dornbirn, Dornbirn, AU (2017); Museum Morsbroich, Leverkusen, DE (2017); Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg, Wolfsburg, DE (2017); Fondazione Museo Pino Pascali, Polignano a Mare, IT (2017); His work is included in museum collections of the Centre Pompidou, Paris; the Royal Museum for Modern and Fine Arts, Brussels; Museum Voorlinden, Wassenaar; Museum Arnhem, Arnhem; the ING Art Collection, Amsterdam; the Akzo Nobel Art Foundation, Amsterdam, and Cobra to Contemporary/The Brown Family Collection.

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ABOUT Ryan McGinness

Ryan McGinness was born in 1972 in Virginia Beach, VA
He lives and works in New York, NY

His work consists of an amalgam of icons and symbols. Drawing from his background in the design industry, Ryan McGinness’s work resolves the clinical graphic aesthetics of media as vast, contemplative fields of intimate meditation. It incorporates strong social commentary on iconography, language, and historical and contemporary symbolism. His graphic drawings and personal iconography are replicated, recontextualized, and materialized infinitely throughout his densely layered paintings.

Born and raised in the surf and skate culture of Virginia Beach, Virginia, McGinness moved on to study at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania as an Andrew Carnegie Scholar. During college, he worked at the Andy Warhol Museum as a curatorial assistant, which inevitably influenced his proclivity toward pop and graphic aestheticism. Known for his original extensive vocabulary of graphic drawings that use the visual language of public signage, corporate logos, and contemporary iconography, McGinness creates paintings, sculptures, and environments and fabricate the iconography of contemporary experience as spiritual and timeless.

McGinness’s work can be found in such art institutions as The Museum of Modern Art in New York, NY; The Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, CA; the Cincinnati Art Museum, Cincinatti, OH, and private and corporation collections including the Neuberger Berman Collection, New York, NY; Cobra to Contemporary/The Brown Family Collection, and the Charles Saatchi Collection, London.

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ABOUT Muntean / Rosenblum

Markus Muntean was born in 1962 in Graz, Austria. Adi Rosenblum was born in 1962 in Haifa, Israel.
Muntean/Rosenblum live and work in Vienna, the city where they met while studying at the end of the 1980s. The artists have collaborated since 1992.

Large-scale painting is one of the core aspects of their practice. However, they often expand their work by creating large installations with sculptural elements where performances are staged or films screened. In addition, they make drawings as well as collages with texts and photographs.

In their work, Muntean/Rosenblum mix references to art history and present-day popular culture. They mostly depict groups of apparently lethargic or melancholic young people in idle situations, which are either ordinary and everyday or mysterious and ambiguous. The often-dreamy scenes take place in rooms, public spaces or landscapes as if part of a film, presenting unresolved situations in the making. The characters seem to adopt postures copied from fashion magazines, or from paintings originating from the renaissance to the nineteenth century. Their work is frequently accompanied by captions or texts not-directly relating to the depicted scene, adding another layer of complexity. The artists themselves described their work as ‘precise ambiguity’. By playing with visual codes from the past and the present, Muntean/Rosenblum scrutinise the power of images and how these constitute an overwhelming collective memory.

Work by Muntean/Rosenblum has been exhibited widely in international museums, institutions and galleries. Recent solo exhibitions were at Espacio Marte, Mexico City (2020); MAC, Coruña (2018); MOCAK, Krakow (2018); Group exhibitions they recently participated in were, among others, at Tel Aviv Museum of Art (2019); Kunsthaus Graz (2018); Nam June Paik Art Centre, Gyeonggi-do (2018); The Parkview Museum, Singapore (2017); and Oude Kerk, Amsterdam (2016). Their work is included in both private and public collections, such as the MoMA, New York NY; the Albertina, Vienna; 21c Museum, Louisville, KY; the KRC Collection, Voorschoten; The Rubell Family Collection, Miami, FL, and Cobra to Contemporary/The Brown Family Collection.

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ABOUT Anthony Goicolea

Born in 1971 in Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Lives and works in New York

Anthony Goicolea (USA, 1971) is a first-generation Cuban American artist. He grew up in the Deep South of the United States of America, in the midst of the Cuban refugee crises, coupled with the advent of the AIDS crises, and the rise of the religious right. Goicolea was socially stigmatised for being Cuban, gay, and Catholic. These circumstances brought about a heightened awareness of social constructs, and the changing nature of identity in politics – a theme that continually influences his work. Goicolea explores themes ranging from personal history and identity, cultural tradition and heritage, to alienation and displacement.

His diverse oeuvre encompasses digitally manipulated self-portraits, landscapes, and narrative tableaux executed in a variety of media, including black-and-white and color photography, sculpture and video installations, and multi-layered drawings on Mylar. Best known for his powerful, and often unsettling, staged photographic and video works, Goicolea made his artistic debut in the late 1990s with a series of provocative multiple self-portrait images. These early works featured groups of young boys on the threshold of adolescence, acting out childhood fantasies and bizarre rituals of revelry and social taboo in highly staged domestic or institutional settings or dense, fairy-tale forests. Revealing a playful self-consciousness, they often consisted of complex composites of the artist himself, in all manner of poses and guises. Soon thereafter, Goicolea garnered international attention with his ambiguous, yet strangely compelling, landscapes, ranging from dream-like woodland environments to vast, unforgiving urban and industrial wastelands. The artist has created several series of digitally composited, and heretofore uncharted, topographies, often populated by bands of masked and uniformed figures.

In recent series, many of the images are devoid of humans, although the landscape reflects an anonymous and increasingly tenuous human presence. In these works, primitive lean-tos and crudely constructed shanties coexist in an uneasy union with the technological vestiges of an industrialized society. Suggesting a world on the brink of obsolescence, these chilling images further cement the pervasive undercurrent of human alienation—from one another as well as the natural environment—that can be traced throughout the artist’s work.

Anthony Goicolea has exhibited widely, notably at the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, Illinois; the International Center of Photography, New York and Museo Reina Sofia, Madrid. Goicolea’s art is held in many public collections, including the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY; The Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY; The Guggenheim Museum of Art, New York, NY; The Brooklyn Museum of Art, Brooklyn, NY; Yale University Art Collection, Photography, CT; the Museum of Contemporary Art of Castile and Leon, Spain;  21c Museum, Louisville, KY, the Akzo Nobel Art Foundation, Amsterdam, and Cobra to Contemporary/The Brown Family Collection, among others.

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ABOUT Jacco Olivier

Jacco Olivier was born in 1973 in Goes, The Netherlands
He lives and works in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Jacco Olivier fuses painting and filmmaking by repeatedly reworking paintings in generous casual brush strokes and systematically photographing each development. The various stages are combined into projected animations. The resulting films are enigmatic and experiential – moving in and out of abstraction they reveal the traces and decisions made by the artist in the process of painting. While there is a clear and quite complex process involved in their creation, Olivier does not set a thematic agenda for the works, or for their relationship to one another. The films are instead imagined as windows onto converging, and often elegantly simple, moments of daily life – a bus journey, a swim in the ocean, or a walk through the woods. At this convergence of painting and cinema, however, lies an uneasy tension, a feeling that something is about to happen or has just happened that is unexpected and beyond our control.

Jacco Olivier is a graduate of the Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten, Amsterdam. He has exhibited worldwide, notably at ZKM, Karlsruhe; Sammlung Goetz, Munich; Victoria Miro Gallery, London; Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York, NY; Dordrechts Museum, Dordrecht; MCA Denver, CO; The 56th Venice Biennial, Venice; Frans Hals Museum, Haarlem; New York City Center/New Museum, New York, NY, and GEM, The Hague. His art is held in many public collections, including Museum Voorlinden, Wassenaar; the Honart Museum, Tehran; the Zabludowicz Collection, London, and the Rubell Family Collection, Miami, FL. In 2019, he was awarded the Jeanne Oosting Prize for figurative painting in The Netherlands.

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ABOUT Renato Nicolodi

Renato Nicolodi was born in 1980, in Anderlecht, Belgium
He lives and works close to Brussels, Belgium.

The architectural work of Nicolodi is clearly monumental. The artist is inspired by classical architecture, which he uniquely processes. It is only when the viewer steps onto the work and inspects it from close range, that he can obtain a clearer understanding of the work, as if he is invited to take part in a visual and physical search within the architectonic forms he has created. Different vantage points and views reveal subtle games of light gradations with the constantly recurring subjective black space, that remains inaccessible for the viewer, coaxing one into reflection. Pure formalistic language is given an almost sacred priority.

Renato Nicolodi studied Audiovisual and Fine Arts at Sint-Lukas in Brussels, and is a laureate at the Higher Institute for Fine Arts (HISK) in Gent. His work can be found in the SFMOMA, San Francisco; Beelden aan Zee, Scheveningen; the collection of the province of Oost-Vlaanderen, Belgium; the province of Vlaams-Brabant, Belgium; the city of Genk, Genk; The city of Lokeren, Lokeren; Ekard Collection, Wassenaar; Achmea collection, Zeist; Houthoff Buruma, Amsterdam; Cobra to Contemporary/The Brown Family Collection, and many other international private collections.

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