4/7/2015 - 1/8/2015
Galerie Ron Mandos, Amsterdam
Ron Mandos has the pleasure to announce the first exhibition of Coen Vunderink (1979, Dalfsen) with the gallery. In his exhibition the painter takes us on a subliminal journey to the depths of Paradise, long after god's eviction notice was put up. A series of new works visually channel the very desolate state of the Garden of Eden without it's inhabitants. The large-scale paintings show a more brutal side to Eden, where perfection is obscured by chaos. The wild overgrown landscapes, that echo the dream-like quality of Henri Rousseau's work, become the artists' personal narrative plains for dissecting the darker and lighter tones of the human psyche.
Vunderink in his work seems to want to cleanse the word Paradise from its more contemporary connotations and restore it to its biblical state, so that peace and tranquillity can reign once more. Paradise today has become synonymous with the very cardinal sin that led to it's closure namely, temptation. Media and advertising today seem to want to suggest that sampling the forbidden fruits of our time will cause an upturn in our existence. Holidays on sandy beaches in countries with rogue regimes, dating sites for those in 'committed' relationships or simply by popping pills in a variety of colours with an equal variety of promises. All docile solutions to not so docile problems. Vunderink's quest for Paradise however takes a more introspective approach. His paintings become a commonplace for life's most ardent questions; Why are we here? What could be our purpose?
Vunderink neither suggests to have the answers, nor does he allude to the existence of there being any. With his work he challenges his audience to find themselves in the dense blossoming garden that he lays out for them. Temptation awaits, live the dream, disappear here, happiness next exit on the left, your Paradise awaits.
Text by Steven van Grinsven, 2015
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