Michael Borremans: Weight

Expect the Unexpected

Review by Grady Harp

Michaël Borremans has said, “I use clichés and other elements that are part of a collective consciousness my work would be perfect on biscuit tins.” He creates absurd and sometimes ominous paintings. “Horse Hunting” (2005), for example, depicts, in a muddy palette, a pale and moody-looking man in a suit jacket and crisp white shirt shoving two twigs up his nose. He stares straight at us, and the wall behind him is filled with his shadow. At the 2006 Berlin Biennale, Borremans showed a film on a small LCD screen, which he had framed like a painting. The piece was based on a 2002 drawing of a girl, which he reproduced in three dimensions, so that the girl slowly spins around. That idea he transformed into separate paintings that are included in this catalogue, fine representations of a show by the name of WEIGHT that at De Appel in Amsterdam. Whatever the medium, Borremans’ work bears this trademark sense of absurdity verging on menace. Continue reading