Getting to Know Denise van der Burgh
Denise van der Burgh, the oil painter inspired by colour and the weaver of narratives.
Who is she artistically?
She is an oil painter who is deeply interested in the visible world around us but chooses to interpret it in a personal way. This means that all her paintings are figurative, but they often show situations that are not probable, although they are not impossible. There is always the suggestion that something is happening, which often gives my paintings a surreal, narrative character.
What is her style?
Van der Burgh has great admiration for painters who display artisanal expertise, like the artists of the Dutch Golden Age. She still continues to learn from them. Her themes are serious but also playful, and she likes to combine objects that are not easily found together. For Van der Burgh plants and animals are an inexhaustible source of inspiration. Maybe the most characteristic trait of her work is the need to use colour. She muses that monochrome paintings can be interesting to look at but to create a painting is about using a lot of colour.
The earliest example of her love for colour is the delightful painting of Engelse Drop from 1988. Engelse Drop is the Dutch name for liquorice allsorts.
In a more recent work Van den Burgh manages to capture serene nature with the same exuberant colour use as with Engelse Drop in Pavón.
Why is your style special?
The use of colour and ambiguity coupled with a fine art technique result in very original works of art. Because the viewer is not sure of what the image means he is invited to fill it in with his own imagination.
An extreme example of this ambiguity in name, surrealism and exquisite technique can be seen in Kiwi Country. There is a touch of whimsy in this surreal painting. The colour of the kiwi fruit is exquisitely depicted in the beautiful landscape painting.
What are your qualifications?
An Art historian and before and after that degree a painter who has had lessons from, amongst others, Arthur Stam, Richard van der Spek en Fieke Weilers.
Arthur Stam, born in Delft, The Netherlands in 1953, is a painter that combines Realism with Romantacism and Surealism. Richard van der Spek is a painter born in 1946 The Hague that is well known for his socialy critical and satire art. Fieke Weilers, born in Amsterdam 1957, works in Leiden is known for her diverse oeuvre in The Netherlands. Weilers goes on a yearly tour of creating landscape paintings across Europe.
In most of Van der Burgh's work one can see her influences as an art historian and her teachers. However, Waterlelie III is wholly her own work that mixes all her years of painting and study into a completely unique Van der Burgh painting. It combines composition with realism and technique. Waterlelie III is a beautiful tranquil piece seeing the waterlilly from a different perspective. The use of colour is translucent and refreshing.
What does art mean to Van der Burgh?
Art is a severely underestimated but most important component of our lives. Only a society that values art, both the making and the collecting of it, is a civilised society. Personally, art gives me great joy. She love looking at outstanding works of art all over the world. And producing art works feels like an adventure to her. Searching fort the right composition and colours and trying to create the sought-after atmosphere is an effort every time. Surprisingly, It can sometimes lead to results that were not planned at all! And at the end of the adventure it gives me great satisfaction in having created something new – something that did not exist before and that she hopes that it will also give some happy moments to other people.
My favourite work is Bananen. Or just simply banana, only the history and future of the banana as we know it is not simply or sure.
You can buy Denise van der Burgh's work online at Gallery Sorelle Sciarone or at the Asia Contemporary Art Show in Hong Kong (4-7 October 2019).
Van der Burgh's work has been collected by Dutch collectors.