Thu 10 September – Sat 7 November, 2015. Madrid
NoguerasBlanchard is pleased to announce an exhibition of new paintings by Alain Biltereyst. Employing his characteristic bold geometric forms and solid blocks of colour they represent the artist’s continuing interest in the visual imagery that permeates our urban environment with signs and symbols.
The apparent simplicity of Alain Biltereyst’s paintings belies a greater sophistication in their metaphorical construction and design. While at first glance they evoke certain tenets of neo-concrete art such as extreme economy of form, elegant lines, and richness of surface, Biltereyst’s practice is also influenced by his background as a graphic designer and takes as its starting point the system of production, distribution and consumption of goods that surrounds us. By appropiating formal elements from the public space and corporate sphere, Biltereyst’s seductive paintings present a minor détournement in the context of artistic creation and the art market, motivated by a dialectic of devaluation and revaluation.
The exhibition comprises eight small vertical paintings on wood hung in single file along the gallery walls. A wall monochrome in a rich shade of ultramarine spreads accross another wall, heralding a new development in the scale and support of his works. The overall spareness, ordered geometric constructions and lively colour palette of Biltereyst’s pictorial language is openly inspired by the graphics found on the sides of trucks, packaging, shutters, fences etc and could easily function as logos or components of a company’s brand identity. A visual archive developed through his observation of the urban landscape and documentation of stripes, lines, shapes, and colors present in our daily lives, often unconsciously. As implied in the exhibition’s title a homage to the ordinary, Dear Everyday.
Another aspect that enhances the visual impact of these works is their discrete format – varying around 23 x 16 cm. As we approach the works, the process behind the pictorial method is revealed. We perceive the delicate acrylic brushstrokes, the slightly deviating lines of his forms, the discernible pentimenti suggesting that the artist changed his mind in the process of creating a painting. These subtle imperfections interrupt the two-dimensional nature of the works while they signal distance from computer-generated graphics and industrial fabrication, resembling the scratch marks on the surface of a vinyl record that affects the sound quality. This type of error, or glitch, in computer terms, is the kind of technological failure that causes a rupture in information flow, exposing randomness and imperfection in a perfectly designed digital file. Here, in his small, poetic and simple paintings, Biltereyst suggests that malfunction and error draw attention to the active production of the “accidental potential” in any product.
Alain Biltereyst (Anderlecht, Bégica, 1965) lives and works in Brussels.