Galerie Gabriel Rolt is proud to announce Uncontrolled substances, Niels Shoe Meulman’s first solo exhibition at the gallery.
Over the last few years, Shoe’s artistic expression has radically changed.
Rooted in his graffiti background, and achieving ultimate extensions of his calligraphic past, Shoe’s most recent works carry the traces of manual skills and techniques, that refer to letters and calligraphic shapes. The new paintings, however, express something completely new. Inspired by artists like Cy Twombly or Christopher Wool, Shoe’s approach to his formal language changed radically towards abstractism: the strictness and precision are now entirely gone, creating possibility for different shapes to find their own form.
The free brushes of paint, applied with strength and energy, come alive like overgrown grass; like wild trees or plants, the strokes of paint seem to expand on the canvas’ surface, moving, growing freely and uncontrolled. seemingly uncoordinated
The parallel with a natural world is not accidental; not only do the apparent patterns remind us of uncultivated gardens, they are actually made concrete using flora’s artificial reproduction. Experimenting with mediums, Shoe started to often employ fake plants instead of brushes, creating a directness with new, interesting effects on the fabric and conceptually linking the formal resemblances of the patterns with the instrument itself.
Encountering different textures and oscillating colors, the metallic and iridescent paint seems to softly explode on the surface of the canvas, its shiny gleam invests the viewer’s gaze almost like a surge. The richness of colors and shades encounters movement, accentuated by the folds of the fabric, which hangs without frame on the wall. The ‘unartificial’, loose character of the canvas gives even more life to the mighty brushes, and, yet again, hints towards an uncontrolled, natural roughness.