Listening to the Future
Life is like Art for its own sake. We are living in an eternal now, and when we listen to the Future, we are not listening to the Past.
For me the most compelling aspect of Art is developing a concept that communicates to the viewer, Art is an opportunity to connect with people, listen to their needs and deliver experiences which reflect positively on society. Art should inspire peoples and cultures to grow, transform and look to the Future.
You never know what the Future holds. So follow your heart, make your dreams come true and listen to the Future.
Leon van den Eijkel, 2018.
Black Asterisk are excited to hear the rumblings of Leon van den Eijkel’s solo show in our future. With Round and Round recently erected on the cliffs of Waiheke for the 2019 Sculpture on the Gulf, we at The Asterisk can celebrate with a show of Leon’s paintings, and somewhat smaller sculptures.
It is almost impossible to discuss Leon van den Eijkel without also discussing colour. van den Eijkel describes his use of colour as ‘colour coding’. “Colour coding perfectly balances the thin line between urbanisation and nature. There is a tremendous capacity for variation, especially when various colours are combined. Selection and limitation of the colours, however, guarantee a solid structure that is nonetheless free of rigidity as a result of this elastic and broad method.”
Over his 30 year career, van den Eijkel has not limited himself to one art making practice, but rather has produced lightboxes, paintings multimedia installations, and sculptures - even including the classic Kiwi bbq - that utilize reflective surfaces and colours that are often based on his continuing dialogue between his homeland, the Netherlands, and the Pacific.
We also can’t avoid mentioning van den Eijkel’s past. “For a long time I didn’t think about the past, just looked forward, but I don’t want to forget the past and the positive, rich memories of my childhood.” One particular memory was unlocked when Leon experienced his first sunrise in New Zealand. The distinct, unusual colours of a New Zealand sunset reminded him of being a young boy and visiting the seeing Mondrian’s The Red Cloud. This moment was the instigator of the style and palet Leon van den Eijkel is known for. He combines the modernist styles of geometric abstraction like De Stijl and Mondrian with a fresh perspective on the Pacific. Some of van den Eijkel's more well-known works include the Red Cloud Confrontation in Landscape(1996) which peeps out of Gibbs farm to watch the water in the Kaipara harbour, and Urban Forest (2007) which listens to the winds blowing in from the Cook Strait to Wellington’s Lyall Bay.
"I'm not a writer," he states, "I can only make small statements. But for me, my colours are my way of writing. I'm living now where I want to live, in the Pacific. I like working with the links from my old to my new life, which is why I want to relate them to the Pacific colours."
Adding another level to the many accomplishments of van den Eijkel’s art filled past, at Black Asterisk we are Listening to the Future. Obviously on a more accessible scale than the huge and high profile public tours de force, Leon’s new works nevertheless dominate the gallery grounds of The Asterisk. The colour blocked canvas sculptures encourage us to pay more attention to our surroundings. “Like coloured windows, van den Eijkel’s walls of unique Pacific colours speak more to us than the stained glass church windows of an old and tired Europe.”- Brian Richards
For both Leon van den Eijkel and Black Asterisk the future sounds good. Come and have a listen for yourselves and join us at the preview on Thursday 7 March from 6:30-9:00, and from 8-27th March, Tues-Fri 12-5, Sat 11-3.