Fransje Killaars

installations, folding screens
work on paper, hand-blockprinted fabrics

03 September – 08 October 2023

finissage Sunday 8 October 13:00 – 17:00 h.

Galerie Maurits van de Laar is pleased to announce the collaboration with artist Fransje Killaars, who opens the new gallery season with the solo show THE INTUITION. In addition to hand-blockprinted fabrics, the exhibition features work on paper, folding screens and two installations: THE INTUITION and After Image. Both works incorporate human figures that you can see as mediators for the viewer. They lead you into the installation and function as carriers of meaning and the viewer’s projections. The kneeling figures in THE INTUITION evoke associations with stillness or contemplation, the figures in After Image. disappear further and further into their veils to eventually become pure colour.

Colour is the all-encompassing subject in the work of Fransje Killaars (1959). In the 1980s, 1990s, she used fluorescent colours in her paintings that to the eye left an afterimage on the white wall. Colour thus stepped outside the frame of the painting into space. Triggered by this phenomenon, she started exploring how she could leave the flat surface of the canvas and extend her work into another medium. In India, she discovered the possibilities of textiles at a traditional weaving mill. From then on, Fransje Killaars started making installations with textiles, giving colour a haven where art touches upon design, architecture and fashion.

From 1984, she was also assistant to Sol LeWitt and worked with MVRDV architects on a proposal for the UN building in New York. In 2003, a textile artwork by Killaars was realised in the Herenkamer of the Catshuis, residency of the Dutch prime minister. Issey Miyake discovered her art in 2004 and invited her for a collaboration and to exhibit her installations.

Textiles have protective and comfortable qualities, making the viewer feel enveloped and protected in the work thus immersing him/her in the effect of colour. Fransje Killaars’ installations have a strong autonomous quality but also address social and political themes that are touched upon without making them explicit. The work Toko, now on show in the exhibition Between Borders at Museum Arnhem NL, refers to the fate of refugees. The political crisis in 2000 in Kosovo causing a large number of displaced people inspired Fransje Killaars to make the work. It consists of a huge tarpaulin with four colour strips in yellow and green hanging from wall to wall. On it lies her so-called alphabet, consisting of materials such as bags filled with wool, hand-woven carpets and fabrics. The installation Image of Power shown in the Textile Biennial at Museum Rijswijk is inspired by the theme of human rights and the right to freedom in particular.

for museum exhibitions see:
Images of Power, Museum Rijswijk, through 7 January 2024
Between Borders, Museum Arnhem, through 22 October 2023

article about the opening of the new gallery season in The Hague and Rotterdam: