GUEST ARTIST Rik Vermeersch

Landschap in Corsica, 2020, oil on canvas, 80x100 cm

Rik Vermeersch lives and works in Merelbeke.

As a reaction to ‘estetising art alienating from reality’ Rik Vermeersch starts drawing and painting people in their daily appearance. He gets his subjects from magazines and newspapers in which he looks at people as an ‘object’ rather than a ‘subject’. He is only concerned with the ‘presence’. From then on, the ‘dissimulation’ that is so typical of his work became increasingly clear.

From 1970 onwards, his drawing and painting work took on a more digital character. To the painter’s amazement, this technique displays an analogous identity with the image structure of a computer print.

From 1980 onwards he began to alternate his drawing and painting work with sculpture.

Because of the ‘erotic surplus’, women become Vermeersch’s main theme in the early 1990s. Photography forms the basis of his drawing, painting and sculpture work. He photographs his models stripped of as many ‘subjectives’ as possible. They pose naked, frontal, without movement or environment, with a facial expression that repels sentiment.

Since 2006, in his drawing and painting work, the model reappears in a real environment. The static female nude is now the main motif, she shares her place with portraits – from magazines and newspapers – of male and female persons, whether moving or not or dressed.

Rik Vermeersch shows us a relativising realism that is constantly situated between the individual physical form on the one hand, and the detached, spiritual non-form on the other.

In the news