ABOUT THE EXHIBITION

Galerie Ron Mandos proudly presents the solo exhibition The Monolith by Dutch artist Levi van Veluw.

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Since his early childhood, Van Veluw has been fascinated by things that are theoretically possible but difficult to imagine. The fantasy about an environment with other laws of nature, a world with a different logic from ours occupies him. 10 years ago, he became fascinated with Science Fiction books by Fred Hoyle, Isaac Asimov and Aldous Huxley.

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In his work, van Veluw often reverts to the underlying principles of these stories in which science, technology and the development of knowledge are called into question.

“By creating an environment in which everything must be redefined, the visitor loses his hold and grip on reality. His senses and brain become over-stimulated, emotions and feelings are fired up. The visitor is hyper-aware of his surroundings and at the same time invited to become part of it.”

It is in particular the psychological part of this process van Veluw is interested in. Through the use of unrecognizable forms and the creation of a disruptive environment, the visitor becomes disassociated from his existing associations.

The Monolith is an extension of the comprehensive exhibition The Relativity of Matter which van Veluw realized in Marres in 2015.

A perfect cube is set in the middle of a space. It looks like a massive construction, yet behind its dark walls, like a creator, the inventor, the artist, the maker builds a new universe. He invents, collects, organizes, arranges, makes, forges and polishes. The monolith is the source. Outside of this core exists an alternative reality that solely originates in this ‘laboratory’.

The visual elements such as grids, geometric shapes, a desk or specific surroundings, all reminiscent of van Veluw’s previous work, are made visible in a variety of ways. Sometimes they appear familiar, at other times alienating or fragmented, disconnected or rather reintroduced in a new context. Substantive themes, such as chaos, order, disorder or alienation, which van Veluw explored in previous works, also reappear in these works.

ABOUT Levi van Veluw

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

Over the past 15 years, Van Veluw has produced a diverse and evolving oeuvre that is exhibited all around the world. He is known for installations, sculptures, drawings, and autobiographical films that draw from his childhood memories. From the depths of his memory, the artist unearths images that provoke universal emotions and question our human logic. Van Veluw plays with elements of order and chaos, posing to the viewer questions about our obsessive pursuit of control.

Van Veluw creates his works with extreme care and craftsmanship; his sculptures of clay and wood are made entirely by hand, giving them an authentic, coarse, and organic character. His intricately built-up charcoal drawings show great symmetry and harmony, whilst his remarkable use of light evokes a strong, meditative mood. The installations by Van Veluw offer intense and immersive experiences. In the past, he has built complete, though fictional cathedrals – amongst other dark and sensory spaces built of obscure forms and materials. Visitors that enter Van Veluw’s alternate realities become disassociated from their existing spatial interpretations. They experience a disruptive environment where both order and chaos live one amongst the other.

The work of Van Veluw has been exhibited internationally in leading museums and institutions worldwide, such as the Museum of Arts and Design, New York; the Bass Museum of Art, Miami; Ars Electronica, Linz; Centro Nacional de las Artes, Mexico City; Design Museum, London; Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, and Marres House for Contemporary Culture, Maastricht, amongst others. His work 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.

Additionally, Van Veluw has worked on commissions for private clients. Within these commissions he has undertaken many collaborations. In 2012, Van Veluw worked alongside curator Marc Coetzee on the film “Family”, produced as part of the “Films4peace” project. In 2014, working alongside Hermès, Van Veluw created a life-sized site-specific installation for one of their main windows in Shanghai. Van Veluw has also participated in international film festivals, including Addis Foto Fest, Addis Ababa; Afrika Film festival, Leuven; Trinidad and Tobago Film Festival, Port of Spain, and West Midlands Human Rights Film Festival, Birmingham.

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