joris august

Daumier Honoré


Twenty years ago, he began to draw and paint. “I discovered that I was seeking something else,” Verdonkschot said. He spent two years learning tricks of the trade from “an old intelligent sculptor” and reading books about sculpture as art and a trade, the body and monographs about
important sculptors and ther ideas, seeing and physically feeling famous statues and
experimenting in making things. He kept one of the key elements of his work as a filmmaker –the manipulation of light- using that skill to adress the way light falls on his statues when they are displayed.

All of his works of the human form and the paradox between the balance of the introvert with
the extravert, extreme body parts versus soft parts and the female and the masculine. “I’m
fascinated by the body”. Verdonkschot said. ”Mostly I concentrate on the female body which
has more possibilities to express than in the man’s body. I’m fascinated by the mystery that is
called woman. My sculptures are a search to the women, to capture their beauty -the outside,
but also the beauty that has no form yet”.

A beautiful book of his works, “Joris August Verdonkschot: Beeldhouwer/ Sculptor: Vissi d’arte
was publsihed by Van Spijk Art Projects, Venlo. The fine-tuned body shapes within its pages are wonderfully familiar -as if the artist has carved out of the highlights of an Olympic Games. They
represent that single second of life to be preserved through eternity.”I am very interested in movement”, he said. “Everything that lives, moves. Even in a body that seems not to move,
the belly is moving through breathing”.

“Everything in the wind II” in bronze, contains the familiar shape of a gymnast, their leg almost
as straight as a leg can be, delicately belanced as the other bends inwards, toe places against
the thigh with their arms arching back as the chest curves perfectly. The sculpture“The Actor”
doesn’t need a name attached to it. The well-carved face could be any legendary film or
theater star whose years and yaers of workin the spotlight has made every dent, curve and
feature of their face as familiair to us as our own.

Works as “Autumnleaf” of a torso and “Panta rhei” of a body tightly wrapped balancing in the
air on just its toes are less defined as if so to say it’s whole body that makes the complete person.
They’re no less striking than his earlier work and leave moore room for interpretation.

While he’s yet to have his work exhibited in the United States, Verdonkschot has a few
Amercican curstomers who display it in their homes. For now, you’ll have to travel overseas
tot see it. “In september/October, I have an important exhibitin by gallery Zofier in
Nieuweschoot, near Heerenveen, in the north ofour little country,” he said. He’s sharing
the exhibit with one of Holland’s best figurative painters, Douwe Elias, “I’m looking forward to
seeing how his paintings and my statues match”.