For the occasion of Unseen, Galerie Fontana is pleased to present the work of Joan van Barneveld (NL) and Ilanit Illouz (FR). The works of both artist’s investigate material processes that both elevate and obscure the innate qualities of the desert landscape.
Joan van Barneveld works dig into the vastness and emptiness of the Californian desert landscape. He uses the method of screen-printing in white onto a colored canvas. Therefore, the subject of non-places and non-subjects cultivates a dynamic receptivity in which there remains no solution and no logical narrative to be found.
Since 2016, Illouz has been fascinated by the geologic area that borders Palestine and Israel in particular the Judean Desert, and the Dead Sea. Her research in the field draws attention to ongoing depletion of natural resources due to human activities. She collects the salt from the desert floor and then, in her studio uses it to fossilize her prints, lending them a sculptural quality. Both image and structural component at once, the salt solidifies the work and makes it scintillate, revealing the organic properties of the mineral but also its hieratic beauty, evoking a landscape for contemplation and a threatened ecosystem.