THE INNER ASYMMETRIES OF MIEKE VAN DEN HOOGEN

Tablinum: after having admired the works of Mieke van de Hoogen during the last exhibition at officinacento5 in Como, we like to give you an enlightening conversation with the artist to find out more about her work of art: in her work, images of women take an important place. In these images, she strives for a combination of naturalistic elements, abstracted forms and emotions. A female body does not interest her as it represents an ideal of beauty, but it is a representation of a body, a body which is lived, which can be read emotions in the image.

She tell us about her use of images: “The image is not an empty vessel, the body is no shell. In this shard I give it inward again, as thin as possible, fragile. In addition to images of women I make ceramic objects. In these objects, I lost my imagination. They are made f or the enjoyment of form. I also make pots, built according to ancient Indian techniques, sometimes with a silkscreen decoration, sometimes reduced fired. By reducing the work undergoes hypoxic changing color: green copper is copper red. The expression and the joy that I have put in the pot, there is hardly a tool. In addition, I also make bowls, vases and plates, which are usually meant to be used”.

Mieke Van De Hoogen

Do you think there is a material or a technique in which it is easier to express yourself?

There is not a material to express myself easier than clay, because it’s a soft material in which you can work very Nice.

What triggers you during the creative process?
The trigger is that mostly I make large work about 1 meter high, and when I am working on the top of the statue it already dry on the bottom and then it easely breaks. When the big vases are in the knill  it’ ‘s important to control the temperature constantly, because when the temperature is highering too fast, or lowering too fast the sculpturen will collaps.

What are the sensations that you feel during the processing of your sculptures?

When I am busy with making the sculpture I am fully concentrated and I forget all about me, time, to eat, ect.

A question to which all the artists always respond reluctantly, but in the end it is natural to

ask: who inspires you or at least what is the artistic figure who most influenced the way you

express yourself with the language of sculpture?

The artist who inspires me most is Giacometti

How is the world seen through the eyes of a sculptor?

When I am looking around I am always looking to people to see how beuatifull or how ugly they are. Something of this I want to express in my sculptures.

What are the main qualities that do you think should have a sculptor?

The quality is patience, because  it’s a long way from clay to a statue or a sculpture.

How long does it take to make a sculpture? What are the main steps?

First of all, I have to prepare the clay, coloring it, then it has to dry about a week. Then a can start to make something . Every day  I have to bild a small part on the statue or sculpture. The clay may not break or splitt up during the process.  When the work is finished it has to dry for a week or two, it has to be baked in the knill, first time till 950 degrees, than I have to glaze it and for the second time I have to bake it till 1050 degrees.

A work of art could be also a confession. What do you want to confess?

My work is not a confession, I enjoi it very much, it’s a plessure.

What is an important memory that you carry with you and that makes you always move?

During the work and looking around yourself you see the differences in form and people  and that always inspires me.

How do you feel to exhibit your sculptures together with those of four other international

artists?
I like to meet other artists on an international podium, and I hope people like my work.

I know that is a difficult question: what is the work that most represents you?

The work that represents me most are the body’ ‘s of women.

What do you think about the future of art, particularly about sculpture?
More young people are painting nowadays, and the handwork  of ceramics is losing ground.

What will be your next challenge for your professional artistic career?                                       The next step in my Career is an exhibition in New York in June 2016.

Elisa Larese

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