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18 MARCH 2022 - 28 MARCH 2022
Prins artists
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5. Prins Nicolas

Vagabond III

Oil on canvas
60 x 80 cm (including frame 65 x 84,5 cm)

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“For me, art is about being able to convey the drama of someone who has been abandoned in this world and how they can survive in this splendour. Art, like life, lies in this tension between drama and splendour. This is why, when I make a painting – I do not strive to create a perfect anatomical copy. What I transfer on paper or canvas is decomposing matter. It is the expression of an emotional mixture of anguish and joy. At the end of the day, it is not the task of an artist to speak clearly. Art to be art must vibrate.

Being a person of colour and mixed heritage, queer and immigrant I have no difficulty finding subjects for my paintings. In them, I see myself as a film director composing narratives. There is an almost cinematic suspense to many of my paintings. A theatrical scene where something is going to happen or has just happened. The unique atmosphere of my compositions is built on source imagery, including archive photos, film stills or cartoons, the mood of which I transfer to the canvas.”

Born in 1987 in Moscow, Russia. Lives in Antwerp, Belgium.

MA Painting at Sint-Lukas Hogeschool Brussel
Interior Design at Sint-Lukas Hogeschool Brussel
Painting dé Kunsthumaniora (secondary art school)

Pop-up exhibition Eleven Steens, Brussels
Maow Exhibition, la Vallée, Brussels
O'Final Exhibition, Loodswezen, Antwerp
Campo & Campo, Antwerp

The painting submitted is part of the series titled “the Vagabond”, inspired by the 1961 Italian drama film Accattone, written and directed by Pier Paolo Pasolini, a scandalously controversial Italian neo-realist film director. This grim story of pimps, prostitutes and thieves triggered me to create a series of portraits of the main impoverished protagonist Accattone (in Roman dialect meaning a vagabond). The series consists of three paintings two of which are now in a private collection.

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