NK Gallery is pleased to open the new 2015-16 season with GIMME SHLTER, the solo exhibition of Hans Vandekerckhove. The works from his new series, inspired by architecture, natural landscapes, united by the topic of shelter, will be shown at CosMoscow 2015, the International Contemporary Art Fair (Moscow, RU). The new book, covering the recent works of the artist, with the same title ‘GIMME SHELTER’, written by Erick Rinckhout, will be presented in the gallery.

“Hans Vandekerckhove paints slowly. His work is also an invitation to look slowly. Invariably, he stops time and banishes all sound from his paintings. He allows his world to gradually solidify, along with the oil paint. Life is preserved, as it were, under a bell jar. Yet the work of Hans Vandekerckhove does not lock the viewer out. On the contrary, it is open and inviting, even generous. The space, which plays such a crucial role in his paintings, begs to be entered. Like a contemporary Alice, the viewer can step inside a colourful and benevolent universe: a Wonderland of sweeping landscapes – with or without a greenhouse as a recurring motif, sleek modernist architecture, secluded gardens and, occasionally, ruins. Often grandiose and overwhelming, but always protective.

Hans Vandekerckhove has recently added the intimacy of the living room to his repertoire. But, here too, light plays an essential role: light as a source of life, and as the foundation of the painterly arts. Without light there is no vision, no gaze, no line, no surface, no colour. Hans Vandekerckhove admires Henri Matisse, the great French master who felt that his paintings ought to be like a comfortable armchair in which the spectator – a traveller – could recover from his fatigue. Like the paintings of Matisse, those by Hans Vandekerckhove – regardless of the extent to which they are inspired by the visible and tangible world – are primarily mental landscapes. The painting is a haven, a shelter, an ideal and perfect world; a space apart that is both enchanted and enchanting. “

Erick Rinckhout. Gimme Shelter.