About Group Exhibition “Repopulations” at Kingsland Wildflowers Festival
The “Repopulations” exhibition will open during the Kingsland Wildflowers Festival and will be on display during Climate Week 2019. More than 20 artists will participate in the event. Dutch talents Sjaak Kooij and Marijke Brinkhof will participate in the exhibition. The exhibition addresses the importance and celebrates the repopulation efforts of ecosystems in several ways – by presenting a selection of artists working in the area as well as showcasing artworks that comment on environmental themes.
About Sjaak Kooij
Sjaak Kooij is an artist and art teacher, living and working in the Netherlands. He finished the Amsterdam Art Academy – fine arts (AHK) in 2005. After graduating, Sjaak has been working as an autonomous artist and art teacher until this day. His work is mostly represented in the Netherlands, however, he worked with a few galleries abroad in Australia, the United States, and Germany. His first artist residency, in 2016, was in Detroit. It made a huge impact on Sjaak as a person and artist. Since that year Sjaak had several solo shows and participated in many (international) group exhibitions. His work was also on display at international art fairs: the Other Art Fair NYC 2019, and This Art Fair (Amsterdam), Art the Hague.
In his paintings, he uses elements of actuality such as social, cultural, or political issues that define our times. He takes images from media and everyday events – alternated with footage from his personal archive – out of their original context, which creates an exciting interaction between image and content. As a result, the spectator will be confronted with these contemporary topics in an entirely different way.
Themes such as anonymity, estrangement, individualism and transience play an important role in his artwork. With these themes, occasionally used in an absurd staging, he confronts the viewer with ideas and posed questions.
The work represents a search for boundaries, in which technique and image merge into one. Imagining these extremes manifests itself in dynamics and strong contrasts. The work derives partly from the expressionistic method or instead staged as substantive contrast. The different contrasts are not only reflected in content but can be found in technique and design too. Due to a layered method of working, the painting will create a dialogue within itself during the process.
The act of painting itself, working with different materials with paint as a foundation, is an important part of establishing the artwork. The process of adding, removing and repainting, but above all exploring the medium painting, is essential for him as an artist.
About his residency in Brooklyn
During his artist residency in the Mothership in Brooklyn, NYC, Sjaak will work on a new series of paintings for which he focusses on humans in their, sometimes estranged, natural habitat. It is a search for human natural roots, in a completely cultivated area. This contrast is the basis of his most recent work. The new work will be displayed in the group exhibition “Repopulations”, this will be a part of the Wildflowers Festival.