St Lucas School of Arts Antwerp
In his second group exhibition, Odilon Spitaels’ is showing drawings and paintings that are no longer to be expected in a contemporary art exhibition. His charcoal pencil drawings allow a traditional composition to shine through, are at the same time they are very direct and playful, but also appear very dark in a way.
The drawings show very detailed versions of animal heads from the top. From there on the drawing becomes more and more spontaneous in its lines downwards, but thus forms a connection of several drawing styles in one composition.
Behind Spitaels’ artistic work, a socially critical approach can be assumed in the context of his biography. His work “Mass” reflects the allegedly existing individual, who sees himself as such in this society, but in reality cannot be one. In his eyes, (social) freedom is nothing more than an illusion.
Not only the subjects of the works are dedicated to critical themes, but also the artistic style is not unfree of significance: Spitaels does not sympathize with conceptual art – even if it is more suited to contemporary tastes. In his eyes Conceptual Art is too theoretical and too far away from what art should be. Conceptual art would not only fail on a theoretical level, but also on a practical level. Thus, his drawings should not be taken merely as an end in themselves, but rather as a reminder that he should take contemporary fashion to court more strongly.
The real motivation behind his pictures is basically not to make any statements – a contradiction.
© Polina Sluzkaja