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Bart Pols

My work consists of drawings, collages, paintings, sculptures and performances. The creative process is an important part of my work in which craft, concept and research are intertwined with each other. In my work life is central, and from an autobiographical starting point I try to translate my research on several seeming contradictions in life into image.

The contradictions that fascinate me in daily life – such as life and death, love and jealousy, comedy and tragedy, sexuality and power, concealing and showing everything – serve as starting points for my work that approaches these contradictions from an inquisitive attitude, questioning if they are indeed contradictions. This fascination can also be found in the use of different techniques and contrasting materials, such as wood, ceramics, plastics and textile, as well as readymades, that I try to bring together into a coherent whole. I am also seeking a balance between craft and technical ability on the one hand, and a flirt with amateurism on the other. The role of the uneducated amateur, the bungler, gives freedom and may even be provocative in the intellectual ascending discourse of contemporary art. At the same time, technical ability can actually contribute to a certain artistic quality, and I believe that a proper balance between the two can make the audience look and relate physically to the work.

My work often contains humorous aspects, and with this I mean a specific definition of humor that alludes to the seeming joke behind which the deepest seriousness is concealed. The humor often serves as a coping device so that painful subjects can be addressed, and at the same time humor can provide perspective and hope, thus providing a counterbalance to subjects that are difficult to deal with.


  • 'Oost, west'
    'Oost, west'
    Acrylverf, zand en oost-indische inkt op houten paneel
    44,5 x 32,5 cm
  • 'Te allen tijde'
    'Te allen tijde'
    Hout, pur-schuim, gatenvuller, houtlijm, epoxycoating, aluminium
    60,5 x 31,5 x 81 cm
  • 'Ode aan Gijs: zelfportret als koe'
    'Ode aan Gijs: zelfportret als koe'
    Acrylverf en oost-indische op multiplex
    87 x 76 cm