Landscape Echoes / 2021
Goodman Gallery, Cape Town
Goodman Gallery presents Landscape Echoes, an exhibition that delves into the evocative artistic practice of Clive van den Berg whose work deftly weaves together themes of landscape, absence, and echoes. In this show the artist offers a gestural and intuitive application of paint to these thematic explorations, letting the paint have greater direction in the visual composition and emotive capabilities of each work.
Van den Berg continues to reflet on his own complex relationship to landscape with this show providing a body of work that communicates a more visceral articulation of this engagement. This is embedded in the quality of the paint as much as the construction of the paintings and the abstract imagery that emerges on the canvas.
Drawing upon his distinctive visual language of gestural brushstrokes, Van den Berg’s paintings explore the porous nature of land as a receptacle for lived experience, unearthing what lies unresolved beneath its surface. In this exhibition, the landscapes serve as a departure point, transcending their physicality to evoke a haunting absence that resonates within the viewer’s consciousness. In this way, the works, with multiple modes of painting present, operate as a series of maps that guide viewers through imagined topographies and merged temporalities.
Through an interplay of colour and gestural form, the artist uncovers echoes and residues to create a space where past and present merge, and the enduring presence of what once was, reverberates. As the artist reflets, “these vestigial mutterings of geography are prompts that I respond to in my work, connecting the remnant to its repressed or forgotten source.” Each brushstroke and colour choice becomes a vessel for these vestiges, embodying the echoes of forgotten narratives and lost connections. Informed by the profound relationship between body and land, Van den Berg’s paintings become loaded sites where memories converge.