ABOUT THE EXHIBITION
We are delighted to present Currents, a new exhibition by Gilleam Trapenberg at Galerie Ron Mandos running from 23 September through 29 October.
Drifting through the currents of separate places, Gilleam Trapenberg has two worlds under his skin. From a studio in Amsterdam, his memories of an island upbringing are rose-tinted – just as a sun-soaked image of a palm-lined beach obscures a fuller picture of Caribbean life. Returning to the region at regular intervals, Trapenberg maps the textures of a changing territory through photographs – of the people he meets, the unassuming details that draw his eye, and the paradoxical landscapes of Sint Maarten and Curaçao: at once famous, misunderstood, seductive and in decline.
Like many Curaçaoans, Trapenberg first left home in pursuit of opportunities abroad. Negotiating the hybrid identities that emerge on distant shores, his newest work – Currents – is his most personal to date. Steeped in symbolism, the things that Trapenberg records point to an oscillating gaze – shaped by the influences of separate places. A wrecked boat sits stranded on an island beach; a prized scooter, protected from the elements in the heart of a home, promises its owner mobility and status; dilapidated doorways and shattered windows seem to form uneasy portals between divided worlds. Throughout, a succession of portraits observes young Curaçaoans looking out to sea, lured by the pull of something beyond the horizon – as if succumbing to a familiar transatlantic cycle.