Levi van Veluw’s incredible, 3-room installation uses more than 30,000 wooden blocks, balls, and slats. These installations are inspired by different aspects of van Veluw’s boyhood bedroom, where he spent many solitary hours between the ages of 8 and 14: the Origin of the Beginning.
This series of installations, photographs and videos in which van Veluw draws from his own childhood memories to thematically and narratively develop his own brand of self-portraiture.
The artist has created 3 “rooms” covered with more than 30,000 wooden blocks, balls and slats respectively. Each “room” is executed as a life-size installation (4m x 2.5m x 2.5m) together with photographs and videos (without any digital manipulation).
Portrayed in one piece (above) is a desk, a table lamp, a bookcase. The edge of the table is burned by Levi van Veluw as he had an obsession for fire. All of these objects including every inch of the floor, walls and ceiling is covered in the same material: 14,000 16 cm2 dark brown wooden blocks. The blocks are made by the artist and glued on the wall one by one. The works suggest a narrative world behind the abstract portraits.
On the one hand these works present themselves as a continuation of van Veluw’s formal approach to self-portraiture, with their preoccupation for materiality, pattern and texture. Yet they are simultaneously very personal pieces. The repetitive structures seemingly express a ‘horror vacui’ and recall van Veluw the youth and his obsessive attempts to gain control on his life by gaining control of his surroundings. Dimly light and dark in colour the overriding tone of these pieces are claustrophobic and sombre, exuding a sense of loneliness. The meticulous craftsmanship and high quality material with which every last nook and cranny is covered, result in a series of works that are also highly aesthetic.
all images and information courtesy of the artist