Gonda van der Zwaag

For 35 years Gonda van der Zwaag (Heerenveen 1951), makes images. In retrospective the work of this inventive and enterprising artist from Plasmolen (North-Limburg, The Netherlands), shows both a constant and a variable element. Constantly continues the search for the mystery of life and death. Variable is, especially over the last years, the solution with artistic means.

The artist began with "objets trouvés" from nature, fragments such as horns, antlers, shells, stones, trunks and feathers.

In the meantime this has rigorously changed. The artist now works no more out of "objets trouvés", but creates the forms herself, although it still remains based on the shapes of nature. The natural "materials" are now replaced by artificial human-manufactured materials: stainless steel, aluminium, polyester.

The latest Horn tree consisted of an artificial forest made up of metal trees of the same shape, but in different sizes, from 15 cm. to over two meters tall. The trees have branches that resemble horns.

A walk through the Horn tree installation causes mixed feelings.The hard confrontation with direct expressions of impermanence, life and death by showing skeletons and other lifeless objects, have now been replaced by aesthetic forms. The artist seems to have become more speculative and milder. But appearances are deceiving. The youngest works look more friendly, but that the artist has to say has remained the same: a visible and noticeable lethal threat, "Imminent danger" and "life-urge" that coincide in one form.

Gonda van der Zwaag combines her art with her passion for singing. Frisian songs about transitoriness and the fine line between life and death.

Artworks (1)

Gonda van der Zwaag

Artichaut Hollandais

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