Berlinde de Bruyckere is an internationally renowned Belgian artist, working with casts made of wax, animal skins, hair, textiles, metal and wood, who renders haunting distortions of organic forms. The vulnerability and fragility of man, the suffering body – both human and animal – and the overwhelming power of nature are some of the core motifs of de Bruyckere’s oeuvre. Asked to represent her native Belgium at the prestigious Venice Art Biennale in Italy, de Bruyckere made a single, massive, work of art that speaks to healing.
"This work is about healing. It’s like a big wounded body who has support from something else, from somebody else.... I want people to learn how to deal with wounds in their lives. Very often people are ashamed by this. They want to cover them. If you can live with them and even show them, it’s more easy to live with it and show it. "
-Berlinde De Bruyckere
Born in Ghent, Belgium in 1964, where she currently lives and works, de Bruyckere is profoundly influenced by traditions of the Flemish Renaissance. Drawing from the legacies of the European Old Masters and Christian iconography, as well as mythology and cultural lore, de Bruyckere layers existing histories with new narratives suggested by current events to create a psychological terrain of pathos, tenderness and unease. The dualities of love and suffering, danger and protection, life and death and the human need for understanding are the universal themes de Bruyckere has been dealing with since the beginning of her career.
Above Photo Credit: Kreupelhout – Cripplewood, 2012-2013Wax, epoxy, iron, leather, coton, blankets, linenH230 x 410x 1790 (cm)Photo: Mirjam Devriendt