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  • From: 16 june 2018
  • Through: 02 september 2018
  • Location: Museum de Fundatie

JASPER KRABBÉ - JAPANESE PAINTINGS

In his recent series of Japanese Paintings, Jasper Krabbé quite literally reverses the conventions of oil painting. Inspired by Japanese motifs, the series is made by using impressions of images on the back of unconventional supports like antique linen and pieces of canvas from old theatre scenery

Most of the Jasper Krabbé - Japanese Paintings exhibition will be located at Museum de Fundatie in Zwolle. Seven further works by Krabbé will be on show at Kasteel het Nijenhuis.

Jasper Krabbé, Callas/Butterfly (II), 2017, oil and textile paint on canvas, 165 x 145 cm, collection Museum de Fundatie (acquired with financial support from BankGiro Loterij), Zwolle and Heino/Wijhe.


The main focus of these new works by Jasper Krabbé (b. Amsterdam, 1970) is not so much the subject as the painting process. “I wanted to get away from the anecdotal and back to the making process itself. And at the same time to give a greater role to the remains of earlier work and to chance. You throw the dice and never know how it will roll.” The supports he uses are untreated fabric, the backs of pieces of painted canvas, and prints. He paints his unobtrusive images using thin layers of paint, often in pastel shades. The untreated fabric sucks up the paint, giving the paintings an open and transparent look. Sharp lines blur; figures become distorted. Printed patterns from packaging materials like bubble wrap are sometimes visible and – resembling the grid of dots in commercial print imagery – reference the ‘polka dots’ of Polke, Lichtenstein and Kusama. 

Jasper Krabbé, Geisha (detail), 2016, oil on canvas, 170 x 100 cm, collection of the artist.

In a series devoted to Maria Callas, the figure seems to hover somewhere between abstraction and representation. “The picture I used as a starting point came from the jacket of a vinyl record that I found at an antique market. For me, it’s an image full of antitheses and it became an obsession. A western woman playing the part of an oriental woman in an opera – a highly flamboyant art form, but here extremely modest and subdued. I was struck by her introverted expression and pose.”

Jasper Krabbé, Japanese Painting, 2017, oil on canvas, 130 x 110 cm, private collection in the Netherlands.

Jasper Krabbé trained at the Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam, where he graduated cum laude in 1992. He continued his studies at the Cooper Union in New York, one of the oldest and most prestigious educational institutions in the US. Since 1999, his work has been on regular display in the Netherlands and elsewhere. He has had solo shows in places as far apart as Rome (2RC Gallery), New York (Brenda Taylor Gallery), São Paolo (Nara Roesler Gallery) and the Netherlands (Museum Belvédère, Tropenmuseum, Kunsthal) and his work has featured in group exhibitions and at art fairs in Basel, Berlin, Madrid, Miami, Trieste, etc.

Portret Jasper Krabbé

Portrait of Jasper Krabbé, photographer: Annemarieke van Drimmelen.

Jasper Krabbé, Callas/Butterfly (I), oil and textile paint on canvas, 165 x 145 cm, private collection in Amsterdam. 

Jasper Krabbé is a highly versatile artist. In addition to painting, he uses a variety of media, including photography, design and clothing. The key theme of his work is the interchangeability of images from the digital media, autobiographical elements, and subjects from art history. An earlier exhibition at Museum de Fundatie (in 2009) featured a selection of Krabbé’s drawings and paintings from the 2004-2008 period.


A catalogue with the same title as the exhibition will be issued by publishers Waanders & de Kunst.


  • From: 16 Jun 2018
  • Through: 02 Sep 2018
  • Location: Museum de Fundatie