Emmanuel Van der Auwera: Seeing is Revealing

HEK


Emmanuel Van der Auwera, The Sky is on Fire, 2019, HD video, installation view, Harlan Levey Projects, 2019, "The Sky is on Fire, Botanique", 2019. Photo: Gilles Ribero
From May 14, 2022 until August 7, 2022
The Belgian artist Emmanuel Van der Auwera is more than just an attentive observer of our time. "Seeing is Revealing" – seeing as revealing, as uncovering something underlying runs like a thread through his work. In his expansive video installations, Van der Auwera devotes himself to questions of perception – from the mediated experience of a world seen through a smartphone to the images that come from intelligent machines. He often refers to real events, uses existing material from the Internet, which he re-sorts, deconstructs for its meaning and transforms into impressive aesthetic image tableaus. For his first solo exhibition in Switzerland, Van der Auwera created three new works that will be on view at HEK for the first time. The exhibition offers a representative overview of the artist’s work.
ith a formal rigour and reduction to the essential, Van der Auwera dissects and analyses the meaning of images – how they depict reality but also construct it at the same time. He finds his material in the rampant image production of a global screen culture and the imaging processes of new technologies, including artificial intelligence. From this flood of images of our digitalised world, he creates expansive, immersive installations of enigmatic appeal and aesthetic strength. In his works, he reduces his documentary source material to a minimum in a very poetic way, delicate and fragile. He thus creates aesthetic experiences that make the underlying socio-critical questions accessible as a sensual experience in a fascinating and compelling way.
Emmanuel Van der Auwera, VideoSculpture XX (The World's 6th Sense), 2019, HD video, installation view, Collection De Boomgaard, Belgium © Emmanuel Van der Auwera
Emmanuel Van der Auwera, Wake me up at 4.20, 2017, HD video, video still, Courtesy Emmanuel Van der Auwera and Harlan Levy Projects
Emmanuel Van der Auwera, Yet Untitled, 2022, HD video, installation mockup, Courtesy Emmanuel Van der Auwera and Harlan Levy Projects
Emmanuel Van der Auwera, Yet Untitled, 2022, installation view, Courtesy Emmanuel Van der Auwera and Harlan Levey Projects
Emmanuel Van der Auwera, VideoSculpture XIV (Shudder), 2017, installation view, Kanal Foundation © Emmanuel Van der Auwera