Wabi Subi, Sarracenia and Ivy
Sebastiaan Bremer & Erwin Olaf
2 – 4 October 2020
Opening hours: daily 12 – 18 hrs.
For UNSEEN at the gallery, a weekend of contemporary photography in 25 Amsterdam-based galleries, Galerie Ron Mandos presents work by Sebastiaan Bremer and Erwin Olaf. The two internationally renowned photographers made a selection of landscapes and still-lives that show their fascination for nature.
Sebastiaan Bremer (NL, 1970) transforms ordinary snapshots into grandly baroque and surreal tableaux by a careful process of retouching and enlargement. On top of his pictures he produces fine patterns of lines reminiscent of cobwebs, or readings from seismographs. In two photographs entitled Wabi Subi, the artist creates a visualization of a dark starry sky or a deep-sea scene. The works function as a map, helping us to navigate and solving the mysteries of the universe.
A series of Tropicalia works refer to a Brazilian art movement uniting both the popular with the avant-garde and the traditional with the foreign. These works function as a microcosm of art history: a photograph of a wall in Brazil overgrown with tropical vines, a set of European landscapes and modernist squares — all in one. The vines in these pictures had grown bundled together on a ledge at eye level and had been pulled loose in places, revealing the white plaster underneath the painted wall. The vine on the ledge looked like a horizon, with parts of it growing upwards like trees, creating romantic and mysterious landscapes that could be painted by Monet or Rembrandt.
Erwin Olaf (NL, 1959) recently joined Galerie Ron Mandos and presented a new series titled April Fool 2020. For his upcoming solo exhibition at the gallery in Spring 2021, Olaf is working on a series about the grandeur of nature and man’s conceit. For Wabi Subi, Sarracenia and Ivy, the artist shows several still-lives from the series Fall (2008). These works evoke a strange feeling of distance and quietude. The tranquil still-lives with flowers presented in simple ceramic vases have an almost meditative effect on the viewer. The dried or cut flowers in the series Fall refer to the colors of autumn, but also to a fateful sense of demise. The spindly floral arrangements function as a sharp reminder of how quickly beauty fades.