I started making text-works at the Kunstvlaai 2012, a fair for independent artists and art initiatives. I was invited to the fair to participate as art-blogger. For this alternative art-fair I decided to make an analog art-blog under the name of chmkoome/keeskoomen: I invited a number of Dutch artists that I have been following on my blog. With them I curated an exhibition of my favorite artists adding two works of myself. Furthermore, I wrote a diary for ten days during the fair, using conté on A4 drawing-paper. Each day I put the daily page between the works that I exhibited. The purpose was to show the way my blog and my art-practice are intertwined: my art-blog is a integral part of my art-practice!
The diary pages looked like minimalist drawings. They made me contemplate on the visual quality of texts. Experimenting with diary-fragments and imagery I tried to have both adding to the intended idea I wanted to convey. Aware of how my works came to life, I realised it was a process after the initial emotion of an experience. It could be a description in text or contextualising this with a drawing of the thing that caused it. Making sketches of the situation and doing formal experiments with it. Eventually it all results in an artwork. This can be a painting, an installation, a text-work or a video. Since 2012 I even do performances attended by a public. I started combining a limited number of component parts of an artwork so I combined texts with paint-strokes on a monochrome background, showing the atmosphere of the moment. In the exhibition in Lana in Italy I did an installation experimenting with this method.
In the Fuck Focus -show at Buro Rotterdam I showed a story made by text-works, diary sketches, text-painting, diary-texts and painting.
At this time I began to rewrite the fragments that I wanted to use, thickening them into almost poetry-like lines. Some were used for some self-portraits in gouache on a monochrome background with the lines in my hand drawn on it. On this I wrote diary-fragments and painted some very minimal visual information about the situation described.
For “Augentausch”, the EX-MÊKH-show at A-Trans in Berlin for instance, I made the paintings “Dillenburg” and “Aquaplaning”. They are early memories from my travels in Germany that show this way of working. In this show I also had two diary-textdrawings hanging on tree-roots to illustrate the humus-function of the texts. Following this I wrote text-fragments in images and after a research period in the USA in 2016 I made tekst-drawings of sound-fragments that I had heard on the streets, conflicting concepts that I wondered about.
I also did a number of pre-Trump-portraits from memory, mixing soundfragments and visual memory in small canvasses. Atmosphere and small details from the people that I met in a country that was getting an ever worse place to live in. It was depressing and I lost my original intention for this trip, trying to get an image of the situation as it was. After the trip Trump was chosen as president of the USA and I got a job during one year, next to my usual job, so I didn’t do much painting. The images that remained, about Black Mountain College and the derelicts on the streets mixed with my personal memories about studying in California resulting in the most recent paintings on this page.
In the meantime I started in Athens doing text-installations. For the EX-MÊKH exhibition Collateral Zone I combined four gouaches with a text-work. In the exhibition Réflections in museum Waterland in Purmerend and in Fresco e Fruttato in Rotterdam and Keepsake in Tilburg I applied the same technique: woolen thread sticked to a wall with a strong push-buddy. During the EX-MÊKH exhibition MÊKH-web at Quartair in Den Haag I wrote a diary on the wall this way each day during the exhibition.
In the solo-exhibition Facial Reflections I combined notes from my American diary from 1981 and from my more recent research period in in the USA in 2016 in one installation: