R 61-4

Jan J. Schoonhoven


Mixed Media, 99 x 81 x 4 cm.
Materials: papier maché, paint, cardboard

Collection: Caldic Collection, Wassenaar.

Jan Schoonhoven (1914-1994) starts making monochrome reliefs in 1955, working with cardboard and papier-maché. The initially irregular, almost organic structures become more strictly ordered around 1960. The pattern of these reliefs reminds one of typecases. They are produced exclusively in white. In 1960, Schoonhoven co-founds the Nul group together with Armando, Henderikse and Peeters. They want to set themselves apart from the grand gestures of informal art with emotionless works that seamlessly align with the new, sober times. Schoonhoven writes in 1964: ‘The aim is to ground reality as art in an impersonal way.’ Schoonhoven’s reliefs have meanwhile become just as ‘iconic’ as Fontana’s slashed canvases and Manzoni’s ‘achromatics’.

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