Arjan van Helmond

Arjan van Helmond (Deurne, NL, 1971) What happens if nothing happens? How should we describe, question, take into account what happens every day (or not), but returns every day: the banal, the everyday, the obvious, the ordinary, the background noise?

More and more often we find ourselves in a virtual relationship with reality, via our telephones and computers. But where is our life? Where is our body? Where is our space?


In my work I try to trace a path between history, culture, cliché and daily habits; I research the trivial spaces and objects, which we encounter and move in daily without a second glance or thought. I try to appropriate them by painting them with great attention and concentration. I often use photographic material, taken from my own archive or from the internet, but the act of painting must always exceed the photographic level. Painting is by definition an interpretation of the reality, captured by a photograph. The paintings of empty spaces and objects, and more recently also of landscape elements, invite you to make an inner movement: a specific idea comes to the surface, with fragments of memories, followed by emotions and sensations, that belong to them. In my work I’m looking for the psychological potential of the image. At first instance, this process is an exploration of personal experiences associated with places and objects. The everyday things, which you do not give a second glance at first, now suddenly become special and valuable. They‘re able to tell us something about ourselves.