ABOUT THE EXHIBITION

Galerie Ron Mandos, proudly presents Origin of the Beginning by Levi van Veluw. The exhibition consists of new work from a series of new installations, photographs and videos in which he draws from his own childhood memories to thematically and narratively develop his own brand of self-portraiture. The exhibition is running from 21 May through 25 June 2013.

Levi van Veluw has created 3 “rooms” covered with more then 30.000 wooden blocks, balls and slats respectively. Each “room” is executed as a life-size installation and will be presented at the gallery together with photographs and videos. Portrayed in one piece is a desk, a table lamp, a bookcase. The edge of the table is burned by Levi van Veluw as he had an obsession for fire. All of these objects including every inch of the floor, walls and ceiling is covered in the same material: 14.000 16 cm2 dark brown wooden blocks. The blocks are made by the artist and glued on the wall one by one. The works suggest a narrative world behind the abstract portraits.

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On the one hand these works present themselves as a continuation of van Veluw’s formal approach to self-portraiture, with their preoccupation for materiality, pattern and texture. Yet they are simultaneously very personal pieces. The repetitive structures seemingly express a ‘horror vacui’ and recall van Veluw the youth and his obsessive attempts to gain control on his life by gaining control of his surroundings. Dimly light and dark in colour the overriding tone of these pieces are claustrophobic and sombre, exuding a sense of loneliness. The meticulous craftsmanship and high quality material with which every last nook and cranny is covered,result in a series of works that are also highly aesthetic. These installations are inspired by different aspects of van Veluw’s boyhood bedroom, where he spent many solitary hours between the ages of 8 and 14: the Origin of the Beginning.

The exhibition is accompanied by a publicaiton. The book Origin of the Beginning offers a survey of all the photographs, drawings, installations, sculptures and videos produced by Levi van Veluw from 2006 to 2013.

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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