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Klara-Marié den Heijer’s first solo exhibition walks us through her creative processes of making paint, organising ideas, and finally painting these onto primed surfaces.

Artist's Statement

I explore on the play between my inner world and the materials I use when I paint. My work touches on the exchange between mind and matter; matter as the physical substance of the visible world and mind as ephemeral human thoughts that is hidden within. We use matter as a material to give form to our thoughts. This allows us to develop them and extend them into the world. Conversely by implementing our ideas we can also shape the physical world.

A painting is a surface where material and thoughts entangle. Through this alchemical process artists weave a bond between the mind of humans and the world of matter. In his book What painting is (1999:2-3) James Elkins writes:

To an artist, a picture is both a sum of ideas and a blurry memory of ‘pushing paint,’ breathing fumes, dripping oils and wiping brushes, smearing and diluting and mixing. Bleary preverbal thoughts are intermixed with namable concepts, figures and forms that are being represented.

Therefore a painting serves as an archive of materialised thoughts and conceptualised substances.

The show include three key parts: The first is an installation of colour swatches titled Grondstof that serves as a reference for a collection of pigments made of raw material that was gathered from the places I travelled to. The second is Ingedagte an installation of tablets painted with oil paint made from these pigments. Like a system of index cards these tablets are used to gather and organise thoughts. The third part is a body of paintings, mostly landscapes. In Imagining landscapes (2012:16), Tim Ingold writes that landscape is not a ‘unification’ of the dualistic opposites such as mind and matter, but rather a flow between these two. These paintings emerge from the flow between the physical and mental material explored in Grondstof and Ingedagte.


Elkins, J. 1999. What painting is. New York: Routledge.

Ingold, T. 2012. Introduction, in Imagined landscapes. Edited by M. Janowski & T. Ingold.


Farnham: Ashgate Publishing: 1-18.



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