Sean Kelly Asia is delighted to present the first solo exhibition of Ilse D’Hollander (1968–1997) in the region. This comprehensive overview, featuring both paintings and works on paper, will span the entirety of D’Hollander’s career, with many works being exhibited for the first time. There will be an opening reception on Tuesday, September 10, from 6-8pm.
Ilse D’Hollander created an extraordinary and highly resonant body of work which demonstrates a profoundly developed sense of colour, composition, scale and surface. Through her use of subtle tones and pared down compositions, her work highlights the rich dialogue between representation and abstraction. D’Hollander drew inspiration from her surroundings in both Sin-Niklaas, Belgium, where she was born, and the small town of Paulatem, in the Flemish countryside, where she spent the last highly, productive years of her life. Her paintings allude to the material world, suggesting objects, interiors, rural vistas and vast horizons; nonetheless, these images remain resolutely abstract. Focused on the ways in which colour and form are perceived, D’Hollander’s work reveals a masterful command of graphic composition and painterly touch.
D’Hollander’s subtly evocative canvases have drawn comparisons to work as various as that of early Piet Mondrian, Nicolas de Staël and Raoul De Keyser–whom she regarded as a friend. However, her work is distinguished by its romantic and abstract traditions evoking a contemplative tranquility and deceptive simplicity. The intimate scale of her canvasses encourages the viewer to embrace a highly personal relationship with the work, where multiple layers of paint, visible brushstrokes and trembling lines of colour reveal D’Hollander’s tangible and sensual exploration of the act of painting. In the only text she penned about her work, D’Hollander wrote that, 'A painting comes into being when ideas and the act of painting coincide. When referring to ideas, it implies that as a painter, I am not facing my canvas as a neutral being but as an acting being who is investing into the act of painting. My being is present in my action on the canvas.'
Press release courtesy Sean Kelly.