Antonio Jose Guzman & Iva Jankovic
Electric Dub Station is an ongoing project by visual artists Antonio Jose Guzman and Iva Jankovic. Together, they reinterpret the transatlantic connections of indigo-blue textiles, which are deeply embedded with the history of western colonialism. In their work the indigo color represents the diasporic, cultural, and economic history of textile trade and memories of ancient spirits that are printed or saturated into the fabrics. Moreover, indigo is thought to have sacred ancestral powers, that are connected to transitional liminal spaces.
The textiles in the Electric Dub Station series are made using Ajrakh indigo block printing techniques. They were developed in the artist's studio in Amsterdam Oost and printed in the workshop of Sufiyan Khatri in Ajrakhpur, India. Ajrakh block printing is more than 4,000 years old. Indigo is a pigment extracted from the leaves of indigo bearing plants and it’s the oldest natural source of blue dye in the world.
The canvases of Bobbi Essers portray the intimacy between her friends with an incredibly accurate touch. She conveys Queer positivity and feminist messages through her works and photographs her peers in every possible situation. Extra-large or very small seize does not matter in her iconography. Now working with overlapping images on big canvasses, Essers depicts how gender and sexuality have no specific appearances. From a piece of sanitary napkin to the freckles on a shoulder - skin but also clothing items are painted with detail and precision. Instagrammable, but even better in real life.
Hans van der Ham
Human figures frequently appear on his canvases. Figures are sometimes reminiscent of tribal art, sometimes of Picasso or a 17th-century French portrait. In such a jumble of historical references, Van der Ham manages the stratification his paintings possess. Everything on the canvas becomes one, the thick oil paint, the communication between the figures and the facial expression on the faces of his protagonists. Cheerful it almost never becomes; it seems as if the figures still wait to occupy the space between them.
Daniel van Straalen
Daniel van Straalen starts a game with the mind of the viewer. By using images that are immediately recognizable, he offers an opportunity to interpret his work. At the same time, this possibility is also a deception: what is immediately recognized offers no more room for other associations. This also raises questions about authenticity, one of the key elements in Van Straalen's work. He investigates what authenticity still entails in a world dominated by the internet. Does it even matter what 'real' is and what 'fake' is, or who was the 'first' who came up with a certain idea?
Wolfgang Messing defines a multi-level system of allegories in changing degrees of complexity, to represent fragmented memories of global events. He uses a variety of sources from social media and news feeds, photography, advertisements, movie quotes and books to found images, archival and museum artefacts and allusions to the history of culture. Due to his technical skills - Messing was very well trained at the art academy in the East - he can paint in every style effortlessly: figurative, abstract, expressionist and everything in between. He chooses what is right for the subject he wants to depict. Often with a hint to the melancholic, his images do wonder you what life is all about.
Iris van Dongen
She came to fame for her drawings of (young) women, mixing pencil, pastel, watercolor and charcoal, and combining virtuosity and with a complex sensitivity, as artist's inner self-portraits. Her work is very detailed and is influenced by mysticism and myths. At the same time, she uses more contemporary elements to put into doubt the eternal beauty of her subject. Realistic with a twist. In the background one finds vivid and detailed patterns, a recurring element of her work, to disappear in.