Walking on Dartmoor/ index

     
     

since 2000

 

paintings, graphic art

1991-1998

 

graphic art, works on paper

before 1991

 

Dutch landscapes as a preparation for Dartmoor (graphic art)

since 1993

 

artists' books

2005

 

virtual walk (computer drawings and web design)

The dutch landscape

What was I actually looking for in the landscape? Space, emptiness, a sense of freedom. For years I was able to find this in the surroundings of Arnhem. But at a certain moment I couldn’t put the gates, the signs and the noise of traffic beyond the forest edge out of my mind. The Wolfheze heath was nothing more than 'the illusion of the square centimeter'.

To Dartmoor

In 1979 I went to Dartmoor for the first time. Empty space! On a much larger scale than in the Dutch countryside. You can spend days in an area with almost no paths at all and no civilization nearby. You don’t look at the landscape', you 'are in the landscape'.

Walking on Dartmoor is different from walking in Holland

I had to learn how to cope with the Dartmoor landscape. To learn how to understand it to be able to find my way in an area where there are no clear paths, hard going underground, boggy peat, marshes where streams begin and where the weather can be very cold and wet.

Deciphering the landscape

You concentrate on details, the spot where you put your foot, the landmarks in the distance, the colour of the clouds and the vegetation. You have to 'merge' with the landscape to be able to decipher it.

How can I visualize this experience?

A different way of walking gives a different perception. In rough pencil sketches on A4 paper I make a 'report' of my perception during the walk.

Walking through the image

Later, in my studio I put all the fragments of the walk together in a large composition, in the order in which they were made. Looking at it, you can follow the walk, along the paths, the landmarks, through the grass into the empty space.