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Last week, Almine Rech’s Brussels gallery debuted two concurrent exhibitions of works by the artists Amanda Wall and Paul de Flers. Open for viewing through January 15, 2022, the gallery’s winter programming encompasses de Flers’s newest works in the presentation “Take Shelter,” while Wall’s first solo show with Almine Rech is titled “Butterflies.”
Visitors will find a series of saturated paintings with distorted perspectives making up Wall’s “Butterflies.” Capturing her subjects from unusual vantage points with the use of satiny strokes and soft, blurred lines, the paintings suggest a snapshot of a person in motion—a unique moment of intimacy from the viewpoint of someone near to them. Here, viewers will see imagery like a blurred face skewed through a glass held in mid-air, a figure seen from the ground looking up, and a half-naked figure lying on the ground, with its feet existing in the foreground of the painting as though it could reach out and kick those standing too near.
de Flers’s “Take Shelter” presents a series of nine artworks created in the last year. The artist’s second solo exhibition at the gallery includes paintings conceived whilst de Flers found himself in a snow-covered Brussels—a condition that surely inspired the bluish palette seen throughout the works, which appear to have influences rooted in the likes of J.M.W. Turner’s romanticism and the soft, smudgy markings of impressionism. Playing with tensions of danger versus safety, the works follow a broader exploration of shelter and safety during a time when these ideas are frequently under storm in our current lives. The artist’s musings are executed through ghostly, inhabited landscapes depicting scenarios like a pack of dogs in the snow, a single figure lying in the dark on a mattress, and a cloud of smoke rolling in from a fire.