KIM REIJNTJENS

Artist statement

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It is possible that a familiar room can be changed into a room you would not recognize due to the light changing, similarly to how costumes help changing into different roles. Lights can change the mood of a room and, hereby, becomes part of the decor. My work consist of simulating everyday reality in experimental, hyper-realistic, alienating and theatrical artificial situations. I do this by exploiting the balance between what we consider as normal and strange, rules and initiative and real and unreal. You can see my work as an escape from the existing world, yet at the same time it creates a gateway into reality.

 

Not only do I integrate different art practices and disciplines such as performance, film and stage design, my work also functions as a total interactive experience in which multiple senses are activated. It is not about looking up to the artwork but about having the feeling that you as the viewer are part of the work. Because without the presence of the viewer the work just will be an unanswered question. To be a part of my work the viewer needs to have an active role. I do this by presenting recognizable or credible images to the viewer, so they are left to decide to what extent these can be considered ‘real’ or not. I also analyse and abstract the material and narrative elements so the experience of the viewer in my work is less direct. The viewer is made to reconstruct the story on the basis of impulses I assimilate in my work. As a viewer you can connect these impulses and create a story. They can do this for instance by using their imagination or memories. So you may have the feeling that you create the work or at least have an active role in my work.

 

I don’t see myself only as an artist. I like to play different roles whenever I feel like it or when it is necessary. This started when I participated acting lessons when I was a teenager. It was a feeling of freedom when I figured out that I can be whoever I want to whenever I want to. For me it is a way of expressing and learning about myself. I like to switch between an artist, performer, actor and director, and in my work I combine and express these roles.

 

Plays and films are an inspiration for me. Sometimes I catch myself drifting away from reality as I am watching and I feel the urge to lose myself totally and become a part of the play. When this happens I start wondering what the impulse was for this urge so I can possibly simulate or experiment with it in my own work. The central notion of cinema is that film stages a reality that is, essentially, not a reality but an illusion. For me it is not a matter of seeing the reality behind the illusion, but to find reality in the illusion.

 

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