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Le bois parle avant qu’il ne casse
Curator : Philippe Braem
608 Rue Gérardrie
Bart Spitaels’ formal universe draws on the intertwining of nature, technology and the socio-industrial history of a territory. To create his artworks, the artist usually initiates long formal research (multiple visits and pictures of industrial sites, numerous sketches and samples of colors, models, prototypes) before getting to recreate new compositions by coupling existing elements of the industrial heritage, buildings and machines, with shapes and colors that emerge from his imagination.
Nevertheless, due to the current sanitary crisis, the artist was forced to limit his work methodology to create the artwork exhibited in this window display. His initial project was born during a first visit to Liege, when he fortuitously met Anthony, a Frenchman living in the city. The latter shares with him his impressions on the city : here, the walls of the buildings seem to be darker than elsewhere. The hypothesis that remains of black soot from old coal mines still cover the walls of the city has brought Bart Spitaels’ imagination to a boil. Straightaway, it was clear for him that the dominant color of his project would be black. On the other hand, he was also fascinated by the beautiful green spaces that surround the city and by the chestnut that, by its shape and size, reminds him of coal.
The artwork exhibited in this window display evokes an unknown plant on which the chimneys grow. The leaves are turned upwards and are reminiscent of an inferno, coal combustion but also Liege, also called the burning city.