Maquette for Crying Cowboy  2006
200mm enamel on acrylic resin. ltd. edition of 20
Monster Love
 2006 180mm enamel on acrylic resin. ltd. edition of 20

Laughing Girl 2006 200mm enamel on acrylic resin. ltd. edition of 20

Darndest thing: dogs never answer the telephone 2006
 1120mm x 1800mm, mixed media on canvas




François van Reenen at 34 Long

12 December 2006 - 26 January 2007

34Long celebrates two years of brilliant art with two notable shows.

Downstairs, a group show spotlighting William Kentridge and Marlene Dumas; upstairs, a solo show by Cape Town artist François van Reenen, recently returned from two months in the Cité in Paris.

Frank's art brims with his love for toys and games, playfulness and fun. He juggles the cute and the dark; a sort of neo-pop yin and yang. The youngest of a large family, he collected hand-me-down scratched lead toys embossed with made in Japan. He started making drawings at a tender age to barter with his grandmother for candy. His staple diet was cartoons like Tintin and Mad Magazine. Cartoons, like fairy tales, cover everything from infinite lightness and beauty to the murky side of humanity, its absurdity, stereotypes and prejudices. Monster Love is about all of this.

Intrigued by Takashi Murakami and Yoshitomo Nara’s view that pop culture devours art, Frank finds the Japanese attitude to multiplicity refreshing. His ideas, like theirs, are not pristine; they flourish in surfeit. He reads comics, he surfs the net, he watches movies, he is exposed to countless images every day. He keeps a journal, so he notices when issues become ideas in his head. Then he makes drawings, he surfs some more, he montages, collages, prints, paints, shapes, whatever. His taste and his means are entirely eclectic.

Yet Frank retains deep appreciation for the value of one-off pieces and so he continues to do paintings as well as prints, single sculptures as well as casts. Employing computer design and animation he uses the freedom allowed him by his computer to create energetic prints. His playful digitized doodling leads to unrestrained narratives that he translates into sculpture or painting with ease.

Much of his time at the Cité Frank spent photographing dogs in the steets of Paris, then painting these images onto Parisian street maps. These canines are ready for Monster Love, along with a multitude of other works.

Monster Love promises to be the greatest of visual fun. It is a show to look forward to, and once seen, it is bound to be a show to remember.
All images © the artists, 2006
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34 Long Street    Cape Town    South Africa 
For more information contact Andries Loots:   tel. +27 82 354 1500

Gallery hours Tuesday - Friday 9h00-17h00 Saturday 10h-14h00
or by appointment tel. +27 21 426 4594