A bakfiets parade of music and live painting
'Koma bak2bak sessions' is a initiative from a group of Amsterdam based DJ's to play from a 'bakfiets' or 'basketbike' out on the streets of Amsterdam now all music festivals are still postponed. The motto is to keep the spirit alive and keep people out of a overdose of isolation. Koma & Casper Streetman will go bak2bak both sitting in our own bakfiets for a live act parading through the streets saturday september 11 3-5pm in the beautiful fortress island of Heusden. I will be drawing them using my usual medium of ink on paper, this time in a very unusual dynamic way from my bakfiets, while being driven, painting another bakfiets with a DJ inside, also driven. We will pass the beautifull little typically Dutch bridge pictured on the flyer here on the left. You can tune in through there facebook livestream:
Ortigia - Lockdown in Paradise
Ongoing exhibition in Taci Maci pop-up store, Via della Giudecca 37, Siracusa
A series of artworks with its origin on the streets of Ortigia, the ancient Greek settlement in Sicily, Italy. I was living and painting there for a period of 10 months, from october 2020 until august 2021, in the middle of lockdown.
In the mild southern mediteranian climate over winter, its ideal for painting en plein-air. A more traditional way of painting going back to the impressionists. This sense of tradition is very much part of the overall atmosphere in southern Italy, its like time is standing still. Especially with the empty streets during lockdown. It was a ideal open air studio to be working from.
In the quitness of the normally very touristic Ortigia, you get a very authentic sense of what there culture is really about. The local people are out on the streets, leaning against the wall of there house, meeting on a little piazza. Its like they are all one with the buildings, one with the environment. It really feels like what paradise should look like.
Although every paradise has some hidden drama under the surface. Lots of neglect, some kind of carelessness that comes out of distrust. Ironically everything you do or arrange goes through the people you meet, the people you trust, but at the same time you never really know who to trust. There is cctv on every corner of every street, there is a big sense of 'control', even though nothing seemes controlled.
This characteristic translates back to the buildings. Its a mix of some that are seamingly crubling apart and others that are kept in good shape. The ones in good shape are almost always served for rental purposes. Thats were the money is. The construction buisiness in the whole of Sicily is still run by the maffia, so are most of the rental coorperations and most busy bars are also linked to 'the organisation'. So in the end it all refers back to the same theater, the same drama under neath the seemingly flourishing face of the people. I give a interpretation of there culture though the language of the buildings, "the system within the structure".
Belarus - Autocracy Crazy
A series of artworks with its origin on the streets of Minsk, the capital of Belarus, in times of quarantine. In a country led by a dictatorship that shortly after causes world wide concern after human rights violations. By sketching, painting and collage, Casper Strietman captures the image and makes it public to a western european audience.
The work brings in view the interpretation of a country far away from western civilization and from the world the democrat is accustomed to. A country were Soviet heritage is so dominant that you imagine yourself at the set of a movie from back in the days. The KGB still exists here, the headquarters dominates the streets like a royal palace would. If you fancy taking a picture of the building you risk immediate arrest. The streets of Minsk form the paragon of dramatic esthetics imagined in architectural picture elements. Fed by the mystique of a political charge thats ever present. Its good for us liberal eyes to see what could have been and to acknowledge, together with the Belarusians that Autocracy is crazy.