A painting 4 all seasons: The discovery of Americago…

… is the slightly misleading title of a triptych – situated somewhere between Brussels & New York – that took me about a year to finish. In fact it’s rather some kind of interwoven tapestry of hundreds of never ending associative storylines, then a real painting. Few people thought it would ever get finished & framed, but last Sunday the sacred trinity finally left my brand new workplace in Wemmel Werkstatte. In fact I have been working on it in the most diverse places & weather conditions (the Jet space in Summer, our garden in Autumn, my pop up workspace @ Muntpunt & behind the curtain in M museum in Winter & Spring etc). Can you believe I really felt relieved it finally got out of my system? High time to end some more unfinished business these weeks to come…

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PS If you’d ever plan to paint on wood yourself, never forget to put a coat of paint on the backside, otherwise your board will start curbing (take a tip from one who’s tried…) (more…)

Illustratoria!

Until this weekend,  to do our ‘homework’, we had a rather small room with a view over our garden. But in the corner where used to be our boys’ swing and a little bamboo bush, things have gradually changed over the last five months: bit by bit a whole new setting has been taking place…

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This weekend we finally moved into ‘Uncle Tom’s New Cabin’ – with all our stuff gathered & created over all those years – to prepare  our 1st day in the new classroom on the 1st of September. And it feels already like coming home, so I think we may have good hopes things will keep on ‘swinging’ on the spot where I’ll be painting most of my illustrations from now on. Thanks to our good friend & ‘garden-architect’ Fille who took care of this whole new 3D project ;-). Grazie 1000!

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PS Here I am, already working in that corner about a year ago. Must have been destined!

Otto-contrasts: Groot VS Klein

Net voor aanvang van ons broodnodig jaarlijks verlof kregen wij er nog maar’s een nieuwe telg bij in onze lievelingsserie:.‘Otto Groot, Otto Klein’ werd een dik vierkant boek van 25 X 25 cm, broertje van ‘Tel mee met Otto’ en bevat een honderdtal totaal getikte tegenstellingen temidden van een wemelende warme stad (ein Wimmelbuch aus Wemmel, zoals ze hiernaast zouden zeggen).

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Omdat wij dus echt geen geheimen kunnen bewaren, kan je hieronder gewoon even meekijken over onze schouder om te zien hoe we ditmaal te werk gingen om de chaos en tegenstellingen in ons eigen hoofd alsnog de baas te kunnen, want we hadden weer heel wat te vertellen… (Et pour nos amis francophones il y a aussi un bon lien vers notre agent-pas-si-secret à Paris) (more…)

Grl with Guitar – Joyeuse Guitare

Last winter we had a perfectly good (acoustic) guitar standing next to the old Rhodes keyboard in our Brussels based workplace (aka the Jet Space, not to be confused with the really historical Jet Studio a bit further down the Chée de Jette, where once even the Stones recorded ao).

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In fact this instrument wasn’t meant to play with, but to paint on. It had no strings when it arrived and belonged to funky singer songwriter Joy Simar (former 1060) who told me she loved all kinds of ‘blues’, which is rather unusual these days – everyone seems to think blue’s a dull color. Anyway, that inspired me to do something with a sea-view (Sea-Mar!), which lead me to Boticelli’s iconic Venus when I thought about integrating a standing female figure on the only vertical part you have on this particular kind of canvas.

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Here you can see it grow… (more…)

Zin in Zee? (Vlaamse kust – Côte flamande)

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Tijdens de relatief frisse februarimaand zaten wij met ons hoofd al volop in de zon aan zee voor een campagne ter promotie van de Vlaamse kust waarin een tiental badsteden figureren met focus op het culinaire (& culturele) aanbod aan ‘t zeetje.

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Eigenlijk schilderde & verzamelde ik ditmaal vooral ingrediënten op bestelling (Verse vis!) waarmee sterrenchef Steve van het Leuvense restaurant Kunstmaan onze nationale Atlantik Wall kon kneden tot een goed gevulde, maar hopelijk  enigszins verteerbare hoofdschotel in z’n quasi moleculaire (after-effects) cuisine. Klik vooral op je favoriete badplaats in het centrale beeld en vlieg even mee met de niet overal even graag geziene meeuwen… (more…)

Otto-promozione & Gran Tourismo Italia

At the occasion of the ‘settimana del libro e della cultura per ragazzi’ (jeugdboekenweek) & the ‘Bologna Ferre’ (the biggest children’s book fair in the world!) I’ll be entirely at the service of our ‘unserved core audience’ (the children!) in Northern Italy, for 1 week of primavera…

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From Friday March 21 (1st day of spring!) until Thursday 27, we’ll be making a little ‘Tour d’Italie’ – as did every self-respecting renaissance painter once, a long time before us ;-) – that will lead us to Cremona, Padova, Firenze, Bologna & Vignola where we will try to turn several bookshops into work- & sweatshops, as we’ll do with at least 1 terrific toyshop (Hoffmann in Bologna) to promote our Italian Otto-twins (‘Otto in città’ & ‘Otto sulla neve’) published by our sympathetic editor Timpetil in Cremona. (more…)

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