galerie ron mandos‘ exhibition of works by the multi-tasking-conservationist bouke de vries and scavenger-sculptor ron van der ende makes a fine pairing; both bringing together salvaged pieces to create artworks from their medium of choice. van der ende’s bolder pop-pieces are created with discarded wood found on the streets and carefully reworked into large scale, hypnotic bas-reliefs which are somewhat reminiscent of illustrations from an old encyclopaedia. there’s a certain honesty in the pieces with their visible nail heads that only intensifies the engagement and leaves a feeling of respect with the viewer towards the skills involved in creating this familiar nostalgic imagery. although the re-appropriations of bouke’s shattered ceramics also contain a certain transparency, the intellectual engagement with his work is another cup of tea altogether: subtle narratives are worked into his reclaimed fragments through a complex layered and inventive reassembly in an attempt to bridge the time and purpose of the components from their origin to their use, their obsolescence, their rediscovery and re-restoration.
considering the intimate relationship the netherlands has with both mud and wood, these two dutch artists’ work makes a powerful combined statement; not only of the history of these found fragments, but also their intrinsic and renewed social value.