maandag 11 oktober 2010

Seeing things differently

The V1 hit the house of God in a devastating and ear blowing crash. The walls crumbled, the cross fell on the altar breaking into pieces, flyblown stones tore the air. Joost felt a sting in his head, cutting the soft structure of his left eye. Then it went dark. When he gained consciousness, he was at the hospital. His left eye was gone forever, his friend as well. The boy, with whom Joost traded places, was found dead underneath the debris.
Since then he saw things different from most of us. Joost grew up without depth, in a flat world, perspective being something invisible. Yet he learned to draw it. His father taught him.
Seeing what others can’t see and being blind for what is common to most, has an impact on the thinking. ‘A painting,’ Joost claimed when in his forties, ‘is by nature a flat surface. I, as painter, have to respect that quality.’ ‘You are not being consequent,’ I accused him, pointing at ‘Museum’, a mixed media on board with a very eye-catching, three dimensional head drawn in a blue circle. ‘There is also a stair, which is definitely not flat.’
He didn’t agree. For him each work of art inhibited its own needs and urgencies. The inner need of a painting is the only absolute law he accepted while working. ‘Sometimes you have to be inconsequent, for the sake of the piece. There is a necessity for every line, colour and form. If the painting requires perspective, I put it there.’ Then I noticed he didn’t only draw or paint the third dimension in this work, he actually attached another piece of board on it, which leaves a small rim of shadow. ‘And that? What is that?’ I asked, nineteen years old and very keen on outsmarting dad. ‘That’s for real,’ he simply answered.
Eleven years later, 1993, the monograph of Joost is presented in Galerie Hüsstege combined with an exhibition. Werner Moonen, friend and colleague of Joost, closely watches ‘Museum’. ‘What a painting! He defies every rule, yet it all adds up to the strength and power of the work.’
More on Joost? see

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