We are delighted to present Jan Albers in his sixth solo-exhibtion at VAN HORN.
Meditative rock formations or science fiction scenarios of foreign planets? The new works by Jan Albers appear as poetical and archaic pieces of rocks that seem to derive from another world. It feels like if nature, as a built sculpture, depicts a burlesque painting of other galaxies. The space-consuming reliefs speak of a certain feeling. ‘bOOOOOOOuldern’ is the title of the exhibiton. In free climbing (the so called bouldering) everything is about the search for the ‘flow‘. It is about movement and the overcoming of a hurdle with one’s own strength and the absolute sense of freedom. Right there Jan Albers ties in with his new works, which are formed between obsessive actionism and precise planning. Subtle interventions of composition, minimal gestures of overlappings and slight shifts describe a sense of balance that reminds of stacked stone towers which can be found in valleys or mountains as signposts for hikers. A whim of nature or made by humans? Albers is attracted by the idea of the untouched. He plays with the motives of people to relate with nature. Is it about the expression of a bond, the pursuit of overcoming one’s own personal limits or the empowerment of the given enviroment and its might? The artist is interested in the desire to counter something immediate and original to the omnipresence of the artificiality he perceives in urban life. For this he etches and cuts his material and makes it appear like massive mountain ranges. He wraps it in impressive color fadings that range from Twilight to Andromeda. The works on display demonstrate their detachment from the painterly format and play off the formal rules of image and object against each other.
Deliberately Jan Albers brings himself to be caught between two stools. He juggles with opposites and makes them usable for himself. Reminiscent to the principles of nature – and architecture – the sculptural reliefs are characterized by the productive friction between destruction and repair, which is typical for Albers. Alongside the new body of work, a large scale relief of a “chainsaw massacre” piece expresses the approach of constructive deconstruction very clearly and can be understood as the springboard for the new works.
Human and boulder. Wall and sculpture. The exhibition is about balance and the relationship between control and boundlessness. The extensive reliefs seem peaceful, almost innocent, but yet are radical in their refusal to provide a suitable label. Jan Albers takes his pictorial expansion in space to a new level and creates massive and at the same time spheric works that are detached from the codes that surround them.