< Back to previous page
‘Onder de roze duisternis van het slagveld’. Een artistieke zoektocht naar de atmosferische lagen van de geschiedenis
Book - Dissertation
'The rosy gloom of battle overhead' An artistic research into the atmospheric layers of history The purpose of the proposed research is to explore the actions and procedures that are fundamental to my work as a visual artist. This artistic praxis is inspired by the historical method that I learnt as a history student at university, but gradually distinguished itself by creating space for intuition and attention to the image. The specific process of drawing plays a crucial role in this, as a form of thought, slowing down, selecting from and responding to the daily flood of images. I draw in sketchbooks every day, in endless series, on scraps of paper and envelopes and on large paintings. A thought sets me off drawing, the process of drawing generates thoughts of its own and delivers new concepts. After a first stage in which I test my intuitive 'method' against the classical modelsof historical criticism, I clarify the limits of the project by applying methodological choices and the insights acquired in a specific case relating to the 'battlefield' as a subject of historical imagination. This research comprises a long period of my work as an artist (my first sketches of Ypres date from 1991, my series of paintings 'Mother of all Wars' is still in full development) and a first synthesis has already been presented in the exhibition 'War and Trauma' in the Dr Guislain Museum (November 2013 - June 2014). Reconstructions, fictional characters and the genius loci are central to this stage.