Alpha Bête by Kendell Geers

Kendell Geers, 2013, acrylic on canvas, 160 x 210 cm, courtesy of the artist and the gallery

Johannesburg-born artist Kendell Geers comes from a complex cultural background: he grew up in a white, working-class Afrikaans family of Jehovah’s Witnesses during the stormy period of apartheid. Having left home at 15, Geers joined the radical anti-apartheid movement, which influenced him later on in his practice. The striking colours and cobweb-like intersection of lines typify the moral and aesthetic chaos of the psychological universe we reside in. Alpha Bête, his third solo exhibition at Galerie Rodolphe Janssen, showcases a new range of paintings, drawings and installations by Geers.

Geers draws inspiration from Deleuze’s transitional idea of “ligne de fuite” (literally meaning “line of flight”), questioning the accepted boundaries and spaces of our everyday existence. The razor mesh is a pattern that continually surfaces in his work through a combination of rust and paper. One notes the engrossing symmetry and texture of his work, which points towards his personal – and national – history of violence and confinement. Yet a calm sense of beauty and hopefulness continues to shine through in his work.

Alpha Bête is on at Galerie Rodolphe Janssen from 6 September to 26 October.

Galerie Rodolphe Janssen, rue de Livourne 35 Livornostraat, 1050 Brussels, Belgium

Images courtesy of the gallery and the artist.

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