When you possess guts combined with a talent to criticize, there is a constant threat of losing your friends, your job and your comfortable life, which tricks you into resignation. Staff #53 is a tribute to those who continue the fight to better the world. People like Miriam Makeba, Adriano Sofri, Nasrin Sotoudeh, Kamel Daoud ,Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Dom Phillips
A sculpture by Frank Bezemer consists of separate parts that are connected to form a staff, antenna or a scepter. The antenna is ideal for receiving signals from the cosmos. The staff is the perfect tool to directly connect with mother earth.
Filmmaker Nina de Vroome at the exhibition Woeste Grond. The two staffs, on the left (#93) and on the right (#94), were felled by beavers and then transported by rivers to the artist studio. Each staff is the perfect tool to receive signals from the cosmos or to get into connection with Mother Earth.
It is also a tribute to Celleno where he lived until his death in December 2017. Celleno where I like to work in wintertime. Celleno reminds me of the village I grew up in. All people connected. Connectivity and reunion are my subjects in my art practice.
In the village I grew up in, there lived a painter at the time. His studio was located between kindergarten and home. At a friend’s house during primary school, I saw one of his gloomy but yet intriguing paintings of a swamp. Before I left the village to go to high-school, I tried to get up the nerve to interview him in his studio.
He answered my questions while he was working on a painting. At one point he pushed his brush in purple paint – I was afraid he was distracted or irritated because of my questions and would soon spoil the painting with this ugly purple. The opposite happened, the painting gained more meaning instead! It was an eye-opening event!
In Celleno I hoped for an equally inspiring meeting, but in fact I was a month too late; when I arrived in January 2018 Enrico Castellani had just passed away, aged 87.
Some months later I made these ‘poems’ in black, white and gold dedicated to the artist Enrico Castellani and his direct environment.
Inspired by the medieval polychromatic wooden sculptures of mother and child, Frank Bezemer explores contemporary relationships between mother and child. (Anneke with staf # 97, also known as maatstaf II, and Taeke with staf #14 )
Staff # 96 and the artist @
Kapoenstraat Maastricht during the Covid-19 pandemic.
September 25 2020
Free after Balthus’ paintings: Passage du Commerce-Saint-André, 1952-1954 (Fondation Beyeler) & La Rue 1933, (Moma New York)