Sam Hersbach, in his outlook and painting practice, is fascinated by the world that surrounds us, by its apparent trivialities and by correlations that at first glance do not appear to be connected. At the beginning of his process, there is often one thought which suddenly proliferates into a hundred.
Sociological and technological developments, especially with underlying philosophical considerations, form the core of his work. Painting is a process that filters and develops thoughts further, sometimes bringing them to a conclusion and over the last two years, Hersbach has created a sheer number of paintings that reflect this process.
Various series, different styles, abstractions, figurations, reality and fantasy: such is the scope of the artist’s oeuvre that only a selection can be exhibited at a time.
In this way, very different narratives can be constructed, and varying styles can be highlighted.
Sometimes his canvases are multi-layered, colourful and complex in their narrative, with an all-encompassing ambition that we recognise from great historical paintings. In other, smaller-scale works, he does exactly the opposite, zooming in on details that somehow have managed to isolate themselves and take centre stage.
Hersbach himself, as a painter, is always at odds with painting and the myth that surrounds it. We find this struggle and its processing in his paintings that oscillate between the micro and the macro. His mountain pictures, are almost romantic, telling of a young Dutchman’s longing to see high mountains.
In his series of canvases exhibited by Cokkie Snoei, Hersbach shows a world in which relatively small figures enter mountainous landscapes, empty theater halls and houses, next to dykes that are almost flooded.
Although small in size, the scenes are large-scale. Often there are enormous dragonfly-/mosquito-/butterfly-like creatures in it. These figures are a continuation of Hersbach’s drone paintings. But now it’s a all overpowering nature flying around, instead of controllable drones.
(thanks to Fabian Schöneich for some text excerpts).
In her drawings, Marisa Rappard investigates intuitively what it means to be human in our current, fluid world in which technology intervenes lives, contact is ephemeral and overwhelming amounts of information flow past daily.
Her most recent body of work, on display at Cokkie Snoei, consists of refined drawings in coloured pencil. They were made over the past year and reflect on the sense of alienation caused by life taking place mainly online during the Covid crisis: the loss of real and tangible contact with the other. The dispersed sense of self skipping from one online reality into another.
Rappard is interested in how man places it’s hope in technology and confers it almost religious or transcendent characteristics, while at the same time this technology clearly has a most alarming and dark downside.
The figures in her drawings wander lonely through dense abstract structures and anonymous rooms, resembling a hall of mirrors. Iterations of reflections, silhouettes and shadow figures make it difficult to distinguish which is the true self. The self often remains concealed, at times replaced by cardboard-like figures, masks or by it’s own shadow, which seems to part from it. People are surrounded by colourful streams of lines, from which they emerge and in which they are absorbed. It is ambiguous whether man finds redemption in these abstract floods of comforting colours or rather disintegrates within them.
In these fresh new works Rappard takes recent developments in her work a step further. Figuration has re-entered her work in a more prominent way, merged with abstraction. Her drawings are less line-based and all the more organised around colourful shapes that collide abruptly and make up for a confusing play with perspectives. The sense of simultaneity she evokes in the way she constructs her images reminds of elements from cubism.