Exhibition by Dutch artist at Ballina arts Centre

From October 16 to November 27, Ballina Arts Centre will present I N T E R T W I N E, an exhibition of drawings by Dutch artists Hanneke Francken.

The exhibition is the latest in an ongoing collaboration between the Ballina venue and Dutch artist and curator Arno Kramer. Kramer has curated this show and says of the works: "Hanneke Francken's drawings often look like visions. Visions of an almost divine conviction, that force you to experience what is going on inside her head and how playfully and gifted she is at getting it down on paper.

"She draws the landscape very delicately, sometimes prominently in trees sometimes in the background, or with or without birds tumbling from the sky, sometimes with deformations of dead animals and vegetation, which by natural processes can flow together into one whole.

"It seems as if they are brought back to life in some way. A life, by the way, as an image. And herein lies a paradox. If you use figuration as a visual artist, then you can easily get stuck in an ambition to draw the perfect imitation of the world around you. Not so with Hanneke Francken.

"She draws, as it were, a different life into the work. She evidently plays with drama, the supernatural and perhaps the esoteric and religious, without becoming larmoyant. Man is always absent, of him you find no traces of actions in nature, the natural remains the main subject in the often complicated drawings."

Hanneke Francken previously exhibited at Ballina Arts Centre in 2017, as part of Human Chain a group show, also curated by Kramer. That exhibition featured the work of six Dutch artists for whom drawing is central to their practice, and Sean Walsh (Director of Ballina Arts Centre ) says that the collaboration with Kramer is "an ongoing investigation into contemporary drawing – in all of its many guises".

The exhibition will feature works made by Francken during the last ten years. Kramer continues: "The complexity in the large drawings also lies in the technique. Substrates are spray-painted and over them Francken draws thousands of delicate lines that ultimately determine the image. Sometimes she uses gold leaf; there is a great deal of control in this complexity; everything finds its place and you never get bored.

"In the more recent work a stillness appears... both in the complexity of the composition and in the technique. The vegetation and often dead animals are now worked out in such detail and 'included' in a larger whole, in hundreds of lines of colored pencil, that it is difficult to find the core.

"There is even a greater mystification that makes the drawings less realistic in a certain way, and which is given a greater degree of abstraction. The drawings of Hanneke Francken do not have to be understood, they have to be experienced, you can 'wander' in them, you can even disappear in them".

I N T E R T W I N E will be officially opened by Arno Kramer, at Ballina Arts Centre at 4pm on Saturday, October 16. For more information log on to www.ballinaartscentre.com


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