Hans van der Ham

Order & Chaos

Jonas Ohlsson (SE)

Martha Colburn (US)

Rik Meijers (NL)

Gijs Assmann (NL)

Bonno van Doorn (NL)


Curator: Hans van der Ham


For many centuries now, art has been seen as a moment of order within the chaos of everyday life. Garage Rotterdam’s group exhibition, Order & Chaos, examines whether this ancient assumption still applies today.

The ancient Greeks already knew that the physical laws which applied to music should also apply to visual arts. This assumption resulted in revolutionary mathematical and physical principles such as the golden mean and – later – Newton’s law of colours. This awareness had an enormous impact on the ‘creative process’ within the visual arts. Examples of this impact are the use of perspective, and the use of complementary colours in order to make optimal use of their optical effect.

Furthermore, these developments have influenced the relationship between intuition and ratio within the creative process. The contrast between these two concepts has been highly debated in the history of art. To what extent is an artist aware of possible underlying logic during the creative process? When is something ‘right’, and why? Artists are often incapable of answering this question: a recurring battle they have with themselves.

In art, during the creative process, artists appear to regularly let go of their original point of departure for a work of art. The work takes on a life of its own; intuition takes over where ratio left off. From that moment on, it is not only the artist, but also the material, that is responsible for the final result. These matters play a major role in the work of the five artists involved in this exhibition. How can logic be side-tracked, in order to create space for a different perspective?

The artists in Order & Chaos rely upon their intuition and allow images to come into being without any predetermined plan. They display what looks like a moment of chaos in the sharply defined, computer-controlled age we live in. In a large total installation at Garage Rotterdam, together they reflect a new reality: a shadow world that appeals in particular to our sense of whether something is ‘right.’

Featuring the work of Jonas Ohlsson, Martha Colburn, Rik Meijers, Gijs Assmann and Bonno van Doorn

Gijs Assmann, Martha Colburn, Rik Meijers, Jonas Ohlsson, Bonno van Doorn

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