Ornis A. Gallery is proud to present the new solo exhibition Loss in Control by Dutch artist Marco den Breems (1955).
Marco den Breems lives as an Artivist as he describes himself. He doesn’t want to be labelled as an artist. However, Den Breems, calls himself an activist whose mission is to expose the ugliness of modern society by creating. This artistic process results in disturbing installations where we can feel the uncanny. He needs to work in separation for several years to mature a new art project. The artist lives to lives between Europe (The Netherlands) and Africa (Mali). Although the latter is where he spend most of his time. When in Africa he lives in is alter ego Ibrahim Bangali where he lives in his extreme experiences instead of creating them. As the result of enduring conflicts in the Sahel region (Mali lies in the middle of it) terrorism became an integral part of daily life. This also has affected the work of Den Breems and the way we have to look at it. In 2012 extremists seized Timbuktu and demolished many of the city’s monuments and mausoleums and threatened to destroy thousand years old manuscripts.
The failure of humankind over and over again resulting in religious hate crimes, kidnapping and fear is also the source from which Den Breems create his work. As we can see in the African idols in this installation, the artist was inspired by fundamental groups and their iconoclasm. He took the same idea in mind of destroying artefacts. However instead of leaving the idols decapitated he put them back together to a very different state they were before. The disintegration forms the major condition for the infinite cycles of born and reborn. The wallpapers contain various women names all related to the personal life of the artist. This too emphasise the very intimate of the installation. What we are seeing are different types of struggling with life. Some individual (the names) others are more related towards society at large (the idols). However all set in the magical moment which is omnipresent to his work. That is the legacy of his life in Africa where magic can be found in everything around you. You live it because it’s there as it has always been. In western methodological thinking myth is almost faded away. It is put back deep in our unconscious. We want to set the mind free of God and the mystery. Freedom nowadays is not anymore an ideal of collective liberation of the repressed but tends to be an individualistic one where you can do whatever you want. Den Breems stated once: ‘If you can’t share you can’t multiply.’
The artist brings back magic into our world through his work. He sets up a juxtaposition of two different worlds. One of facts about terror, loss and conflict and another more dreamy, mysterious and sentimental . Magic helps us to find and release our inner soul and not to fear what is around us. It gives us the feeling we are not isolated in the cosmos.
Marco den Breems was born in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, in 1955. As an artist he is an autodidact since 1988. His work has been exhibited in 2009 in MARTa Herford (Germany) LOSS OF CONTROL under the curatorship of Jan Hoet (1936-2014). Den Breem’s work is represented in numerous international private collections and MARTa Herford.