SLOW

Galerie Ron Mandos is delighted to present SLOW, a new online viewing room with recent works by Katinka Lampe (NL, 1963). Lampe traverses the realms of figurative, expressionist, and abstract painting in her soft, yet uncanny, portraits. Her works, though imbued with a sense of realism, are not meant to represent those that they depict. Resemblance is not the defining characteristic of these pieces. Instead, the artist sees the figures as visual impressions that, once transformed by her gaze, become representative of larger themes within society, rather than the individual.

Katinka Lampe is an artist based in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. She received her degree from the Academy of Art and Design St. Joost in ‘s Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands. Her work has been widely exhibited internationally and is included in the collections of 21C Museum Hotels, USA; Museum Arnhem, Arnhem, NL; APMA, Seoul, KR; C.N.A.P, Paris, FR; Museum More, Gorssel, NL; Schunck*, Heerlen, NL; AkzoNobel Art Foundation, Amsterdam, NL; Art Curial, Paris, FR; Frisseras Museum Athens, GR; West Sun Capital Collection, Montreal, CA, and Cobra to Contemporary/The Brown Family Collection.

SLOW

 

In her newest works, Lampe has given a special role to the spectator. She allows us an unexpected view of models lying in repose, their heads tilted backwards or turned away, seemingly unaware of the attention they receive. Neither judging, nor forcing their view on us. Lampe’s newest paintings function as mirrors, showing us our reflection rather than the model’s identity, their feelings and beliefs.

Mirror, mirror… we’re facing ourselves in a world on fire. The corona pandemic, worldwide Black Lives Matter demonstrations, global climate change. The internet has turned into an online battlefield of people impulsively posting their insubstantial opinions and obnoxious insults towards others. Despite the internet’s many advantages – our capacity to freely communicate on issues that truly matter, we are being overwhelmed by uninformed statements on a daily basis. In SLOW, Lampe argues for more self-reflection, for taking a step back, to listen, and to stop judging one another without discretion.

Oh, would some Power give us the gift, to see ourselves as others see us! – Robert Burns (Scottish poet and lyricist), 1786

8013191, 2019 | Oil on canvas | 80 x 130 cm

Katinka Lampe

€ 12.600,- (Excl. tax)
Available

“As spectator you are allowed to look more carefully at my work than before. I find the experience of the spectator fascinating. Earlier I painted subjects that evoke questions or provoke opinions by looking straight into your eyes. You won’t have this in my new works. Looking at the reclining figures from above give you an almost voyeuristic perspective. Voyeurism, however, has to do with peeking, with unauthorized viewing. I don’t see that here, because there’s nothing we aren’t allowed to see. As a spectator I put you in a different position than in my previous work. I think that’s important. The attitudes of my models aren’t necessarily dismissive, but passive. The passive attitude is in the horizontal pose of the models. The figures sometimes feel absent.”

Katinka Lampe

4055207, 2020 | Oil on canvas | 40 x 55 cm

Katinka Lampe

€ 5.700,- (Excl. tax)
Reserved

4055205, 2019 | Oil on Canvas | 55 x 40 cm

Katinka Lampe

€ 5.700,- (Excl. tax)
Available

4055196, 2019 | Oil on canvas | 55 x 40 cm

Katinka Lampe

€ 5.700,- (Excl. tax)
Available

In a number of paintings in the SLOW series, Katinka Lampe shows us her models from above. The abstraction value of these works is very high. Lampe zooms in and cuts out details that make her paintings too conspicuous.  We see different fields of color that do not represent anything specific. No detail indicates that the monotonous black surfaces are part of the model’s jacket. Only the human eye fills up these parts of the subject.

4055197, 2019 | Oil on canvas | 55 x 40 cm

Katinka Lampe

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1216196, 2019 | Oil on Canvas | 160 x 120 cm

Katinka Lampe

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A photo shoot precedes each new painting by Katinka Lampe. She instructs her models to take positions and express certain emotions. These expressions and positions are often based on images from art history or derive from news and fashion magazines. For this specific work, Lampe was inspired by a photo of a refugee washed ashore on a beach in Spain. This poignant image of a young man said a lot about how we are dealing with migrants that try to cross the Mediterranean. Katinka Lampe, however, takes the image out of its original context. Without any political intention, she creates her own artistic interpretation of the newspaper image. Looking at the painting you can no longer see that it is a refugee. It has become Lampe’s model, someone from the present, someone you could instantly recognize.

Edouard Manet, The Dead Toreador, 1864/65, Oil on canvas, 75,9 cm × 153,3 cm (National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.)

Edouard Manet’s painting of a Dead Toreador from 1864/65 has been a great source of inspiration for the reclining figures in Katinka Lampe’s new series SLOW. Throughout art history, reclining figures have often been depicted naked. Manet’s paintings of reclining soldiers and toreadors wearing beautiful costumes, however, are more appealing to Lampe.

The largest painting in the exhibition is not only inspired by Manet’s work, but also by a performance that Lampe produced in 2019 for her exhibition Instadentity in Paris. For this performance, Lampe gave her dancers a number of attributes, such as a scarf, glasses, and a fake tattoo. She also instructed them to adopt specific attitudes. Her dancers were given an identity that was not their own. Lampe’s work nearly always explores the question of our relationship with identity, whether it be intimate or overtly exposed. For the works based on her performance, she envisages the problematic construction of the image of oneself and of the other through the prism of social networks.

35016201, 2020 | Oil on canvas | 160 x 350

Katinka Lampe

€ 30.000,- (Excl. tax)
Available

This painting is again based on Lampe’s performance Instadentity in Paris last year. Lampe recorded the performance and used a video still to create this painting of a dancer wearing a colorful collar, dramatically throwing his head backwards. The position of the person’s head is slightly exaggerated, but nonetheless realistic. The viewer of Lampe’s work must easily identify with the person depicted, which is not only realized by the realistic depiction of the figure and the expressions, but also by its beauty. Lampe’s oil paintings seduce us first, then create a certain friction that makes us contemplate the beauty and vulnerability of the dancer.

1318191, 2019 | Oil on canvas | 180 x 130 cm

Katinka Lampe

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1317206, 2020 | Oil on Canvas | 170 x 130 cm

Katinka Lampe

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The work entitled 1317206 is based on a photograph from a fashion magazine. Shot from below, we see the model in her most vulnerable position. By looking away she doesn’t provoke the viewer and gives us a responsibility to observe with certain discretion. Lampe has been portraying black individuals from the beginning of her career. She finds her models on the streets of multicultural Rotterdam and uses a plethora of different cultural backgrounds in her paintings. Skin color was never a political issue for Lampe. Recent Black Lives Matter protests, however, made her reconsider her position to portray black individuals and created extra awareness about respectfully representing people of color.

Work Process

 

SLOW is also about the gentle and rigorous procedure that assures the impeccable finish of each painting. Lampe’s works often require up to ten layers of oil paint, each taking a week to dry. They are the result of highly stylized and choreographed compositions – photographed first, then drawn on paper and consequently cut out. The intricate stencils she uses to build up her layered works have become a trademark for Katinka Lampe.

Each layer of Lampe’s painting requires a new stencil, resulting in a sharp contrast between a dark foreground and bright pink background in for example 1317206. Lampe makes separate stencils for nose, mouth and sweater. She begins with painting the skin and builds up her painting with increasingly darker tones – painting a layer of black hair accentuated by dark blue hues and others close to black, and finishing with a thick glossy layer of pink in the background. The contours of her stencils are still clearly visible. See for example the shaved hairline of the model.

“… I try to remove myself from my paintings as much as possible. Therefore, you don’t see virtuoso brush strokes, but long straight movements painted from left to right.”

Katinka Lampe

This painting of a girl with bonnet is based on an early work that Lampe created in 2011. Lampe approaches her subject in different ways as to keep experimenting with her medium and the subject of portrait painting. The girl we see here fully embodies the image of vulnerability. She makes a suitable model for the SLOW exhibition with her eyes closed, a woolly cap on, and the delicate finish of her sweater.

1318204, 2020 | Oil on Canvas | 180 x 130 cm

Katinka Lampe

€ 18.500,- (Excl. tax)
Reserved

4055201, 2020 | Oil on canvas | 50 x 40 cm

Katinka Lampe

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The paintings in SLOW form a series in which the model does not look at the viewer. This work is one of the exceptions. As usual, Lampe gave her model a role and instructed her to adopt a number of different poses. Growing into her role, however, she began to adopt ones of her own, including this strange but fashionable pose of her left arm resting on her head. Her hand in total composure has a neutralizing effect on the model’s gaze. It indicates there is no danger. Like all other portraits in the SLOW series, Lampe’s models don’t judge nor impose anything on us.

Georges de La Tour, The Magdalen with the Smoking Flame, ca. 1635–37, Oil on canvas (Los Angeles County Museum of Art)

4055191, 2019 | Oil on canvas | 55 x 40 cm

Katinka Lampe

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4055191 is based on a painting by Georges de La Tour, a French Baroque painter who is well known for his religious chiaroscuro scenes lit by candle light, like his The Magdalen with the Smoking Flame from around 1635-37. In her own work, Lampe copies the candlelight that shines on her model’s face. She doesn’t use it for dramatic effects, but rather evokes stillness and serenity. An almost similar scene can be found in 50755197, where a boy’s face lights up from the dark. Lampe painted an extra layer of paint over his face to create distance and to neutralize his gaze.

5075197, 2019 | Oil on canvas | 75 x 50 cm

Katinka Lampe

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For more information regarding the available artworks or any other questions, please contact gallery director Nick Majoor-Arie at nick@ronmandos.nl.

 

 

ABOUT Katinka Lampe

Born in 1963 in Tilburg, NL
Lives and works in Rotterdam, NL

Katinka Lampe traverses the realms of figurative, expressionist, and abstract painting in her soft, yet uncanny, portraits. Her works, though imbued with a sense of realism, are not meant to represent those that they depict. Resemblance is not the defining characteristic of these pieces. Instead, the artist sees the figures as visual impressions that, once transformed by her gaze, become representative of larger themes within society, rather than the individual.

Lampe often uses accessories loaded with connotation to provoke loose characterizations of theme and mood. The imposed roles played by her models, their poses, expressions, and their way of being dressed, mostly copied from magazines, the internet or old master paintings, obscure their personality and provoke deeper and subjective meaning in the minds of the viewers. Through these juxtapositions the artist explores important societal themes relating to identity, aging, color, and the ever-growing dependence on media.

Katinka Lampe is an artist based in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. She received her degree from the Academy of Art and Design St. Joost in ‘s Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands. Her work has been widely exhibited internationally in a variety of galleries, museums, and prominent art fairs such as Museum Arnhem, Arnhem,NL: Museum Van Loon, Amsterdam, NL; Singer Museum, Laren, NL, Museum Jan Cunen, Oss, NL ; Untitled Art San Francisco, USA and Untitled, Art, Miami Beach, USA. Her work is included in the collections of 21C Museum Hotels, USA; West Sun Capital Collection, Montreal,CA: Museum Arnhem, Arnhem, NL; APMA, AmorePacific Museum of Art Seoul, KR; Museum van Loon, Amsterdam, NL; C.N.A.P Centre National des Arts Plastique, Paris, FR; Museum More, Gorssel, NL; Schunck*, Heerlen, NL; Akzo Nobel Art Foundation, Amsterdam,Nl; De Nederlandsche Bank, Amsterdam, NL; ING Collection, Amsterdam, NL; Art Curial, Paris, FR; Frisseras Museum Athens, GR, and Cobra to Contemporary/The Brown Family Collection.

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