Rens Krikhaar, Erik Pape


3 October – 7 November 2010

Rens Krikhaar (1982) has his first exhibition in Galerie Maurits van de Laar. The images in his paintings look familiar at first sight, but when studied closely possess an indefinable, enigmatic tension. In the work The Park a man who is clasping a sheep between his legs is seen from the back. They are lit by a mysterious white light. Is the sheep being shorn or slaughtered, and why in this particular place and what are the four columns around the man? Krikhaar only gives some hints and leaves the observer guessing. In other paintings he achieves tension by playing with formal means. The air above an alpine landscape is painted bright pink and completely flat, from the wooden shed in the foreground a strange orange glow is shining. Peculiar buildings also appear, which struck him during a recent journey through Japan. In a subtle way Krikhaar keeps breaking through our expectations, thus giving the representation more strength and depth.

Alongside the debutant Krikhaar the very experienced painter Erik Pape (1942) presents new paintings of Place Stalingrad in Paris, the subject he has been exploring for years. The present paintings are expressive and almost abstract; the contours of the metro flyover at Place Stalingrad are only vaguely indicated. The rest of the representation consists of dynamic brush strokes with which the air and the trees are painted on the canvas as lively passages. It is not the direct appearance of the square that matters to him, but to capture the space and dynamics of this place, which he visits every year in order to study and experience it anew.