Henk Visch Dutch, b. 1950

"I want to get to know the complexity of representation"

In the seventies Henk Visch (Eindhoven, 1950) started producing drawings which are characterized by a combination of identifiable and unexpect ed, in the sense of previously unknown, representations. His work dwells in the realm of the metaphor, and in a specific manner: he uses the metaphor to explore the distance between sensory perception and the representation of reality in the mind. This intermediate area, in which distance is the central concept. does not involve the design of an idealized fantasy or utopian world, but displays connections which are formed in the mind: conflicts, dreams, memories, desires and observations. The per sonal world of ideas is always seen to find a place in reality. This becomes manifest when the drawing is converted into a three dimensional reality.His first spatial works date from 1980.


Hank Visch's three-dimensional work also addresses the world of representation. The dividing-line between figuration and ab straction is constantly overstepped, releasing the representa tion's force of attraction. The human figure is a constantly recur ring item, conceived of as the centre of the experiential world without however being the heart of the representation. The post-1987 human figures are copies-bronze - which indicate the distance between internal experience and the externally formed image. This yields an infinite number of identifications: In my life there is an image of the life of my fellow-humans.


In the early sculptures (1980-85). working the material is a transformation process in which the material becomes repre sentation. In later works Visch no longer used this technique, which is rooted in Arte Povera (one need only think of artists like Penone, Merz and Kounellis). After 1985 he abandoned the transformation of material and surface. My sculptures have be come symbols whose origin is less important than their correspond ence with one's experiences of others. This stance led to open sculptures, the material quality building up the representation but the eloquence coming from the representation: speaking is representability. The representation does not fall back on well-defined concepts: Stances are there to be abandoned, and he who abandons a stance admits his helplessness. In this working and mental process, the drawings further the acquaintance with the complexity of representations. It is obvious that a way of simplifying them is being sought, enabling steps in thought to be taken.