ROOM 581 Rob van der Hoeven
Inspired by a sense of wonder about the reality of both the present and the past, Rob van der Hoeven abstracts his visual impressions and subsequently reshapes them so innovatively that he creates a new reality: one that sheds new light on existing issues.
Issues like politics and music, for instance punk rock, frequently recur in his work. They not only represent particular political or musical preferences but also have a much broader, social scope: they are employed to illustrate the aesthetics, politics and philosophy of a (sub) culture; they show a zeitgeist.
Capturing the spirit of the times – the way of thinking, the beliefs that, subject to constant change, influence a particular age – is central to his work. He highlights processes of change, of repetition, as well as the constants these entail. In addition, his work links various historical moments and symbols, which results in substantially and visually interesting creations.
Visually, the work is playful due to the use of brightly coloured plastic material and clear, sometimes clichéd symbols that through their universal use and wide scope yield a powerful imagery. A more focused look pushes the work’s playfulness into the background to reveal a deeper layer. Van der Hoeven is committed to the stratification of his work: ‘I want to portray things and give people food for thought, but if they merely enjoy looking at my work, that’s fine with me, too.’
Aesthetics and substance. Playful and deliberate. Art as entertainment, and art as food for thought. Anything goes, says Rob van der Hoeven: ‘As long as it really is art.’
Written by Bo Jobse