Rinus Van de Velde

Rinus Van de Velde was born in 1983 and lives and works in Antwerp. His practice mainly consists of drawings that hearken back to a personal archive of photographs derived from vulgarizing scientific magazines such as National Geographic or from biographies of artists and scientists. Lately, he often re-enacts found footage or even stages nonexistent scenes in photographs, which he uses as source material.

Van de Velde's overtly narrative drawings are confronted with texts in installations that tell a new and personal story. This fiction takes place in a mirror universe that is peopled by courageous alter egos and who serve as ideal representatives of the actual artist. At the same time, this drawn world is delineated by its own subjectivity: it can be nothing but a fantasy, a fiction, and so beyond its borders lies the great nothingness of the “real” world.



Rinus Van de Velde was nominated by Wilfried Huet.

A selective discography of Conrad M.-albums, scribbled down on a napkin, possession of Rinus Van de Velde: The Howling Fantods – Domestic Deliberations EP (2009): 1) Intro to a moody brunch (1:02), 2) Stop laughing, prick (3:12), 3) Get yourself a mars (3:45), 4) Hit hard and slow (2:19), 5) Solo moments (1:44), 6) The flesh is weak (2:27) / The Sad Family – Kitchen Table Melancholia EP (2009): 1) I read books (2:16), 2) Story Junks (0:57), 3) Pain, right here (2:01), 4) Ah Christmas (1:59), 5) What's fair? (1:36) / The Sad Family – Sober & Lonely Fun EP (2011): 1) fuckupstop & funstart (3:18), 2) sleep with a ghost (2:39), 3) what you do = what you become (2:10), 4) stop that song (0:56), 5) night will come soon (3:08) / Xx Xxxxxx – Self-titled EP (T.B.A.): 1) What happened to your band name? (0:22), 2) Misspelled Tattoos (0:31), 3) A Thousand Snares and Floor Toms (0:45), 4) 1982 (0:16), 5) Unite Against Society & Death (1:02). 2012 Courtesy Patrick Painter Inc.
American artist William Crowder, New York, July 2012: When Conrad visited me in 2006, he passionately talked about Rinus Van de Velde over a few gin tonics, his favourite drink. ‘Rinus doesn’t get inspired,’ he told me, ‘he consciously and systematically looks for inspiration himself. Or for good images, as he likes to call them, whatever that means. When he walks the street, he fantasizes about other people’s apartments. He also has a thing for corners, hedges, passageways, gates etcetera: anything that promises something just out of sight, something new. Sometimes he jumps over fences and walls at night, just to discover what he doesn’t know yet. And of course he got chased by dogs, farmers, the police more than once. My guess is that he secretly wants to be everywhere at the same time, that he literally desires to find himself in everything he sees. Or to put it differently: he wants to be all the names in the history of mankind. So whenever he sees a blind spot, he jumps blindly into it.’ ‘Strange’, I answered. ‘I hardly ever saw him outside his studio or an opening, and I always thought him to be the opposite of adventurous.’ (2012) Courtesy Patrick Painter Inc.
Installation view 'With Nothing But Myself', at Galerie Zink Berlin, 2011
‘Me and Conrad M. during one of our silent rehearsals with Xx Xxxxxx, our band in the becoming, surrounded by trash and bottles of a fictive whisky blend I have secretly created in the office, a huge mirror in front of us, in which we can’t stop glancing as we try to get our band’s attitude straight, and in which we both discover that we are playing out very different fantasies of rock ‘n roll life, which afterwards leads to heavy discussions over which image we have to project, fights that already cast a dark shadow over the band’s future before we have even played one single note.’ (2012) Courtesy Galerie Zink
'Although I was already aware that George and I had a mutual respect for each other's work, I didn't know him in person until 1957. I met him at an opening of one of his exhibitions, where I was shocked to see him posing in front of one of his drawings. Afterwards, I told him that I felt the whole scene to be a fundamentally inartistic charade. George answered that he had always been present in his work, and that for him there were no strict boundaries between the universal and the individual. And then he added that there was immense beauty in vanity, and I believed him. I could read the man in his work.' (2011)
Self-portrait as a tennis hero, an image that — as my coach would acknowledge — wouldn’t be far from the truth if I would have begun playing earlier in my life. Sadly, I did not, for reasons not quite clear to me; because no-one really pushed me, because the ironic time and place I grew up in were unfriendly to my ambitions, because I was too sensitive and intelligent to lose my mind in the game, because I was always too busy imagining what I could become to actually become something else than a man who has turned his fantasies into who he really, and professionally, is. Whatever happened, my boyish wishes still linger on in my not so private fantasies, and as far as I know they still offer me a sensible, adult way to become whatever I want, in my studio, for example, using the props available, such as the dirty mattress I never sleep on. (2012) Courtesy Tim Van Laere Gallery
Untitled (The Lost Bishop) ‘They are after you, whoever they are. You are not playing against him tomorrow. You’re playing the system itself.’ 2012. courtesy tegenboschvanvreden