In 2010 George De Decker was given 64 steel plates, each measuring 100 x 100 cm. These plates were once set elements for a staging of Samuel Beckett's Quad.
At first De Decker simply stacked them in a corner of his studio. But that ended when he visited the Neues Museum in Berlin and was inspired by the restoration of its Egyptian Museum. Wherever possible, architect David Chipperfield has integrated the surviving walls and stones of the previous structure into his interventions. And the permanent historical collection has been given the umbrella title Die Bezwingung des Chaos (The Repression of Chaos).
That process, that respectful ‘entente’ between old and new, is precisely what De Decker then applied to his steel plates. For weeks he exposed them to the ever-changing elements – rain, sun and wind – thus generating natural corrosion, the capriciously inventive patina of time. Always in dialogue with nature's colour palette, he then added pure pigments and/or acrylic, ink and lead.
The series was completed in 2016. Originally, a silent, industrial backdrop to a stage production, they now had a new guise and their own voice.
Background became foreground.
© Guido De Bruyn (translation Stephen Smith)
Gallery Bianca Landgraaf @ kunstRAI, Amsterdam
DIE BEZWINGUNG DES CHAOS
28 x 100 x 100 cm
music : George De Decker
double bass quartet of Maurice Aerts (1980).
inspired by Jean Cocteau's "L'Aigle à 2 têtes"